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Staying Fit Over The Holidays

As your lists of events and to-dos grow throughout these jam-packed weeks before Christmas, you can see your workouts suddenly taking a back seat and those fitness goals slipping through your fingers. Unless you plan for success! There is nothing worse than feeling the stress of wanting to spend time with the ones you love yet still wanting to get in your “you time”!

Making small changes throughout your day will make a big difference in where you end up physically after Christmas.

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Instead of feeling like you have to sacrifice time with your family over the holidays in order to get your workout in, plan an activity with them! One of my favorite things to do over Troy’s Christmas break from work is to plan an advent activity calendar. I have two little boys, so the amount of to-dos on a full activity advent calendar could be overwhelming. Instead, I plan an advent calendar for the days we have off together as a family. This year Troy has two weeks off, so we have planned an activity for each day with the kids. These activities include everything from sledding and skating to having pajama dance-off parties (a favorite in our house). Planning for activities gets the whole family off the couch, forces us to step away from the Christmas cookies, and creates memories that are going to last.

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Too many Christmas parties can also be a problem. Making the rounds through your holiday party invites is enough to wear you out without working out! But I promise you will feel a whole lot better in that little cocktail number if you give yourself just 10 minutes to sweat it out.  Studies show that working out for just 10 minutes a day can help strengthen your immune system, burn extra calories, elevate your mood for the entire day, clean out your system, and have you shedding unwanted holiday pounds if you’re keeping your diet on track.

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How to get those 10 minutes in?

Before you jump in the shower and slip into that cocktail dress, put on your favorite Christmas jam, pick 3 exercises (squats, jumping jacks and push ups), set your timer for 10 minutes, and go as hard as you can. I promise that you will feel better about your day—and your energy will increase along with your mood because who doesn’t like moving to their favorite Christmas tunes?

Consider hitting up some classes, too, with family or friends. Honestly, Christmas time is one of my favorite times to get into local studios. The energy is amazing, and everyone seems to be filled with sweaty Christmas cheer. Whether it’s your family or a good friend you feel like you really need to connect with over the holidays, sweating it out together is a great way to spend some time together. Still not convinced? Here is the calorie breakdown of some of my favorite classes.

Based on the average 140-pound woman:

  • Yoga – 160-318 calories. Want to stay on the high end of the burn? Pick a heated power class!
  • Spin Class – 358-715 calories for 45 minutes!!!
  • Boot camp – 468 calories for 45 minutes
  • Barre Class – 350-430 calories for 45 minutes
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Above all else, remember that fitness is about enjoyment and staying consistent. If you have to throw out your perfect gym schedule for a couple of weeks, do it! Enjoy getting out and spending time with the ones you love, no matter what the activity is. Here’s to creating memories and keeping our eye on the prize this holiday season.

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Merry Christmas!


Rachel Doell

For more health tips, meal plans and workout videos. Head to

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