Christmas time is such a busy time of the year, there is lots of shopping, day trips out, Christmas parties, cooking and well thinking too, it can all be a little overwhelming, too add to this pressure it’s also the time of year we tend to indulge an awful lot. If you want some great tips on how to stay healthy this year then check out this blog post I added it’s brimming with great information, or check out this post for staying stress-free.
With all this added pressure it can be hard to know whether or not you should be working out, this post will give my thoughts on this matter, and also some great tips and advice for those who choose the path of working out or for those who choose to relax and rest over this wonderful festive period. I do hope you enjoy it.
I am a huge advocate for moving our bodies, it keeps them supple and strong and the heart happy, that being said, like everyone else I can get a little despondent, sometimes the regime I have implemented isn’t working for me anymore and I take an entire month off. The thing is I am not aiming for a six-pack, I am just aiming to be happy and healthy so taking the month off can allow me to come back with new vigour.
Sometimes, I just need a break from working out, whether its boredom, an achy body or the thought of working out actually kills me. So I take a break and go back to working out when my mind and body allows me. I think most people are like this and it’s perfectly normal.
So my opinion on whether or not you should relax and take a break, what do you feel like? Are you making some amazing gains in your workouts or training for something specific like a marathon? If so it may not be an option. Or are you like me and are just working out for keeping my mind sane and my body strong? If that’s the case it may do you the world of good to take the time off.
If you’re really struggling with this, sit down and journal it out, write your thoughts and opinions on the matter, read them back to yourself, you may be a little clearer. I have some great tips below for whatever you choose to do.
For Those Choosing To Workout
Use This Time To Try Something New
Instead of doing the same old workout why don’t you use some of this time to try out something new and exciting, something you have always wanted to try, or experiment with different workouts from wall climbing to dancing. Not only will you have a ball but you could find a new hobby or just breath a little life back into your workout routine.
Make It Fun
This is important for any workout regime, but especially one which is getting stagnant, are you getting bored of doing the same old run routine? Then why not change up your run by driving to a local trail and running it, or switch up a run for a hike. Are those quick HIIT classes bogging you down? Then switch up a HIIT class for a dance class. What’s great is YouTube has a wealth of videos to try out, there is literally something for everyone. Try a technical ballet YouTube or some kickboxing.
Some times when we overindulge we can feel guilty, this can lead us to feel the need to work out, even when we are tired or just don’t want to. I suggest not overeating, if we don’t overeat we don’t have these feelings of guilt forcing us to work out, that way you are working out because you want too and not because you have to. Working out because you want to is far nicer.
Go For A Winter Hike
I love going on winter hikes, you know those days which are wonderfully cold yet bright sunshine and blue skies. Those days are perfect for wrapping up nice and warm, making a sandwich and a tea in your thermos and getting out to your local trail, family in tow or just you and your butty!
Try Some Yoga
I love yoga, it’s such a powerful tool to have in your workout regime, yoga can be so much, it can relax the mind, body and spirit, it can prepare you for a meditation session, it can build strength and prevent injury. Even once session a week will work wonders, you can go to a class, check out a paid-for app such as Yogia or simply bring up a class on YouTube.
Don’t Let It Stress You Out
Working out should be fun, it shouldn’t be stressful, constantly worrying about speed times and personal bests, let that stuff go over this season and just work out for fun. Who cares if you don’t go up a weight group, or you don’t add those extra miles to your runs, at the end of the day you’re still moving your body, your workout is still being effective, so don’t beat yourself up, just have some fun and enjoy yourself.
Don’t Overdo It
If you do overindulge you may find the need to overdo your workouts, this can lead to a lack of motivation or worse injury. Stick to your usual workout amounts, even if you did eat some extra food don’t feel like you need to do some extra workouts and burn yourself out. Just have a nice day filled with soups, salads and smoothies the next day.
For Those Choosing To Relax
Never Feel Guilty
I think this is the most important point, never feel guilty for not working out, never feel guilty for taking the time you need off from working out, feeling your best doesn’t always come from a kick-ass workout, it can come from some quiet contemplation, it can come from spending time with loved ones, it can come from a face mask and a chick flick. Keeping your mind sane and yourself happy is far more important than any workout, just relax and get back to it next year.
Take Some Time Out To Plan A Great Workout Schedule For The New Year
I love this tip, I am a massive planner, I love planning more than I love doing, I love lists and getting things organised. If I decide to take December off from working out I love to use this time to plan a kick-ass workout schedule that I know I will love, from the workout types to the frequency to the time of day. Then I spend the entire month getting really excited to start my plan, so come January time I am literally chomping at the bit to work out, this newfound vigour for working out usually lasts for a good few months too.
Get Excited For The New Year
Get excited for the prospect of a new year, a whole year to get better at something, a year to learn, a year to get in touch with yourself, a year to achieve something. I love rolling into a new year, it always feels like there is so much I can do and I can achieve, I relish this feeling, the feeling of being able to achieve anything. Why not reveal in this feeling too?
Do A Little Extra Walking Instead
The thing I love about walking is you never feel like your working out, but with a quick pace and some swinging of those arms its a pretty good workout, plus a great way to perk up that butt! There are lots of great ways we can add in some extra steps, from taking the stairs, parking away from the shops, to not driving at the weekends, walking to work a couple of times. So try and get in some extra steps this December.
Concentrate On Your Diet
The thing I have discovered this year, well this November really, it’s all in the kitchen. What I mean by this is weight loss doesn’t come from workouts, it comes from what you put into your body. You can have the best workout schedule in the world, but if you’re constantly overeating you will put weight on. I have lost a lot of weight so far and it all comes from not overeating, I decided to take a break from my workouts and to concentrate on my food, I am so glad I did, I have lost more weight that I ever have before, I will restart my workouts in January, but for now, I am concentrating on my diet.
Only Have A Few Indulgent Days
It is really tempting to go down the ohhhhh it’s Christmas rabbit hole, this rabbit hole can see us majorly overeating, an extra mince pie, indulgent foods, handfuls of chocolates, this all adds up and equates to weight gain. So instead of having daily treats (if you do ensure your in a calorie deficit still) have only a few indulgent days, pick the days you know you will overeat, such as Christmas Day, get excited for those days and eat some nice healthy food leading up to your treat day, it makes the food on those days seem extra special.
Try Some Yoga
As I have mentioned earlier yoga does some great stuff so why not give it a whirl? It doesn’t even feel like your working out, start with a beginner class and just enjoy yourself. I love being holistic in December so I tend to walk a lot, yoga is a great addition to this, I always come out of December feeling ready for the next year ahead, and incredibly relaxed and energised.
Implement A Meditation Regime
This is a great time to implement some meditation, your stressed out and has tones to do, meditation can help with that, plus that time saved from not working out can be used for meditation, and unlike working out you don’t need an hour. If your a beginner starting with 3 minutes is perfect, I am still on 3 minutes and will move up to 5 minutes soon. Next year I am hoping to work my way up to 10 minutes, everyone has 3 minutes!
Well, I hope you enjoyed this post! I would love to know if you intend on working out or taking a break this season! Let me know in the comment below! In the meantime have an amazing day!!