5 Effective Fitness Tips To Reduce Stress Over The Holidays

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The holidays are a time for happiness and celebrations for most of us. The weather, shopping, cooking, gift buying, gift exchanging, along with the music, potlucks and parties are all fun to take part in. For others, the holiday season can be quite stressful and entail many psychological and/or physical stressors.

As you might already know, I’m not a medical doctor (only a happy personal trainer and nutritionist), but after speaking with people throughout the last several weeks during the holidays, I wanted to share with all of you what I’ve learned and hopefully you will be able to use the information or pass it on to others so they can live a stress-free life during this time!

Tip #1 – Make Time for Yourself
All too often, people are so busy trying to make everyone else happy during the holidays that they tend to forget to mentally and physically tune into what they need to make themselves truly happy.

Solution: Give yourself a break and know that everything will be just fine! Stop putting so much pressure on yourself to be “perfect” and allow yourself to be perfectly and gloriously “imperfect”.

Tip #2 – You Feel Pressure To Get Everything Finished
Often times, you can feel like if you don’t finish all of the planning for your family party or office potluck, it simply won’t get completed and everyone will be disappointed and blame you for the issues that might arise!

Solution: Delegate, delegate, delegate!  If you’re the only one who is excited about the holiday festivities and nobody wants to help out then maybe it’s time to give yourself a break and not have one. This is not to say you shouldn’t have family or office festivities, but don’t add additional pressure or frustration on yourself when everyone wants the party, but nobody want’s to help out. Scaling back on the Secret Santa, decorations or potluck, and just asking your collective group what they would like to do, can go a long way to keep you totally sane and positively happy at work and at home!

Tip #3 – Can’t Fit in a Great Workout!
Do you suddenly feel that there’s not enough hours in the day to do everything you want and fit in exercise during the holidays? Welcome to the group! Most people have limited time during the holidays and fitting in workouts can be stressful.

Solution: Scale down your workouts and sign up for a 20-30 minute “HIIT” (High Intensity Interval Training) or a “HICT” (High Intensity Circuit Training) workout with your personal trainer or join a fitness class at your local gym! If you don’t have any time for those types of workouts or classes then try this HIIT workout below and burn some serious calories in the convenience of your own home:

  • 30 seconds of Jumping Jacks
  • 10-15 seconds of rest
  • 30 seconds of Bear Crawls
  • 10-15 seconds of rest
  • 30 seconds of Push-Ups
  • 10-15 seconds of rest
  • 30 seconds of Jump Squats
  • 10-15 seconds of rest
  • 30 seconds of Mountain Climbers
  • 10-15 seconds of rest
  • 30 seconds of Lunges (each leg)
  • 10-15 seconds of rest
  • 30 seconds of Bicycles
  • *Bonus – Alternating Plank Dips (30 seconds)

Remember to go at your own pace and always pay attention to your technique and form. Stay hydrated and end your workout with a total body stretch for 5-10 minutes.

Tip #4 – Don’t Worry So Much!
Worried about gaining weight with all the incredibly delicious foods that are part of the holiday season? We’ve all heard about the average American gaining between 8-15 pounds during the holiday season and you might be nervous about being a holiday statistic!

Solution: Enjoy the festivities but make choices that you won’t regret the next day! The following tips are just a few ideas that you can use during the holidays:

  • Use a Smaller Plate – This can help you from loading up on too much food when you’re having fun at a family party or office shindig. A bigger plate equals bigger portions and that means bigger numbers on the scale!
  • Avoid Mindless Nibbling – Yes, those veggies look great and super healthy on the tray, but once you add all those delicious dips and high-fat dressings on them, those lovely veggies start piling up on the calories which adds unwanted body fat to your physique!
  • Move Away From The Table – During get-togethers, parties or company potlucks, don’t hover around the food. Get out and socialize with your co-workers and introduce people to each other. You will be surprised how many people don’t actually know each other at a big company! If you’re having guests over for dinner or a luncheon, make sure to be a great host and circulate around the room and be the “hostess with the mostess”!

Tip #5 – Give Yourself an Awesome “Me” Gift!
You’re so busy shopping, wrapping, gifting, cooking, baking and decorating, that you’re totally burnt out, but the show must go on! How can you get back into to the holiday groove and avoid becoming a Grinch?

Solution: Give yourself a “Me” gift! This can be a wonderful massage, a spa day or just take a nice relaxing hike. You can also catch a movie that you’ve been dying to see, have lunch with friends or just hang out at the beach and watch the waves. The bottom line is that you can only be as good to others as you are to yourself, and being good to yourself is the first step in achieving happiness!

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About Author

Lisa Lorraine Taylor

I’ve been in the fitness, health and nutrition field for over 18 years and have been certified for 18 years. I live in the beautiful city of Ocean Beach, California. My goal is to assist and reach people who are ready to make a positive change in their lives by providing various types of fitness programs. See my profile page for more information!

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