For the majority, the holidays are all about spending quality time with family. Often, that quality time revolves around food and drinks… so, why not extend that quality time toward some physical activity together?
While the holidays are very busy for many families, strive to avoid the 'all or nothing' mentality when it comes to working out. As long as you’re moving, you’re getting your heart rate up, engaging muscles and burning calories. There are so many ways to get moving as a family that span outside the gym or traditional exercises (which is totally fine if that’s something your family genuinely enjoys!)
But for those looking for a bit more creativity, here are some holiday-related activities to keep the family moving this season:
1. Sign up for a fun run/walk. Whether it’s a Turkey Trot or Reindeer Run, short distance holiday races are offered locally every single weekend. These are a great way to not only squeeze a workout in, but most are family friendly so everyone can join in the fun. Sign up in advance so that you stay committed to preparing/training for the event.
2. Ice skating. Ice skating is an excellent form of physical activity for people of all ages; the kids will love sliding around on the ice, and older family members will appreciate skating’s low impact on the joints.
3. Sledding. Sure, you’re sailing downhill in that sled… but that typically means, you’ve got a nice trudge up a hill! That incline walk in all of your snow gear is a surefire way to warm up the body and burn some calories! You know your kids love it; join in!
4. Take advantage of the snow. If you’re going to be surrounded by snow this winter, take advantage of this free fitness equipment! Build a snowman. Start a snowball fight. Shovel the driveway (well, you might find this more your speed than the kiddos…. But it’s certainly a great full body workout!)
5. Bundle up and get some fresh air! Enjoy a leisurely walk before opening gifts or after a holiday meal. Rather than drive to look at holiday lights and decorations around your neighborhood, bundle up and set on foot for a leisurely walk together. Enjoy a warm cup of cocoa or tea when you return.
6. Football fans? Head outside for a game of touch football during the Football Half-time reports.
7. Consider a membership to the YMCA or other recreational club as a holiday gift for your family. It’ll provide the family options on activities to do together (swimming, playing basketball, taking a fitness class, walk the track or workout in the fitness center together, etc) as well as support your individual health and fitness goals.
Not only are these great ways to squeeze in exercise during the holiday season, but you’re also spending quality time together as a family and creating priceless memories. THAT right there is so much of what makes the holiday season so special, right?! You may find some activities you all enjoyed so much, that they become a new family traditions; something you will all look forward to and come to expect each year as part of your holiday season.