Tuesday, December 7, 2010

12 Days of Christmas. I Mean Fitness. I Mean Christmas Fitness. Yes- 12 Days of Christmas Fitness

I love Christmas.  I really do.  Christmas baking, Christmas drinks, Christmas turkey, Christmas chocolates...and you all know what this means; Christmas POUNDS!

This year I'm offering a challenge to those of you who would like to enjoy Christmas cheer and the best of the season with family and friends without having to worry about what that extra glass of wine (or four) or shortbread cookie (or seven) is doing to your bottom line.  And thus...

The 12 Days of Christmas Fitness

Day 1- RUN
I know you're likely not surprised that I would suggest a run on Day 1 of our (notice I said our) challenge.  Of course I did!  Why a run, then?  Simple- it's simple.  No, really it is.  All you really need is the proper footwear.  Bundle up, lace up and giddy up- get out there in the great out of doors and enjoy a run or a walk run.  30 minutes, please!  Your heart is saying thank-you for the gift!  If you're a beginner and are just not sure how to start?  Do a run-walk.  Run for a bit, walk for a bit.  Repeat.  For 30 minutes.  And watch the ice.  Slippery stuff, that ice.

Day 2- YOGA
Yes!  Nothing like a get down dog to help you to feel your best...or at least your longest and most flexible!  And let's face it.  The holidays, at times, can be stressful.  Nothing like putting your mind at ease for a moment or two while doing some yoga.  Don't have a yoga studio in your winter wonderland?  Try this- meditate for 5 minutes.  If you're like me and a clock watcher, set a timer and just focus on breathing SLOWLY and relaxing!  Then do some stretching.  If you know a yoga pose or two, throw those into the mix.  If not, just S-T-R-E-T-C-H.  And smile.  It's Christmas after all!

Day 3- Release your Inner Child
How about participating some winter fun today?  Like the kind you did when you were a kid?  This will feel  like fun and not even like exercise, I promise!  Skating!  Hockey!  Broomball!  Sliding!  There is so much exercise to be had in the great out of doors, I dare you to get out there and do it.  Triple dog dare as a matter of fact.  Pick an activity, put on your woolies, grab your friends and family and go for it!

Day 4- Cross Country
Nope, not running this time!  Why not try a fabulous cross country ski, running's equally awesome calorie burning cousin?  Cross country skiing is fabulous cardiovascular exercise and works those gluts and quads to boot.  And let's not forget the core...cross country skiing is a CORE exercise (that was for you, GG)...

Day 5- Winter Wonderland
How about getting out there for a walk in the winter wonderland?  There are all kinds of beautiful trails- Vernon if you're in K-town, Assiniboine Park in the Peg, Sandy Beach/Stanley Park in C-town.  Get some fresh air and stretch those legs.  And if I may,  I highly recommend the walk post Christmas turkey.  After the indulgence that is Christmas day, a walk will feel just fabulous.

Day 6- Fast and Furious
Day 4 was all about spending some time on the misery sticks (Xcountry skiis) so why not pick up the pace and spend a day downhill skiing or snowboarding?  Obviously you will not get the cardio burn that you will have in the cross country version of skiing, but you will still work those quads and gluts HARD.  Plus, apres ski is always fun, and an event I highly recommend.

Day 6- The Gym
Why not?  Just hit the gym.  Lift some weights, do some cardio, have a stretch.  Love the gym.  Love.

Accepting that we have no no control with the weather on this one, hopefully the white fluffy stuff will fall and that will give us a great opportunity for a fabulous cardio workout...and while the snow LOOKS light and fluffy, when it comes to shovelling, that stuff is heavy.  Lift with your abs, NOT your back and you'll be fine- and have a clear driveway and fabulous workout just the same.

Day 8- Inner Child Part Deux
See Day 3.  Pick an activity you didn't try (or one that you did and loved) and do it!

Day 9- Spin Class
Do you know I've never tried a spin class?  Nope, never!  So perhaps this is the Christmas that I give myself the gift of cycling.  And you should to.  Everyone, let's try it!  And reconvene to discuss how it went- maybe over wine.  And baking.  Yes!  Brilliant idea!

Day 10- Mermaid
Today let's head to the pool!  I have been swimming once a week and it has been a a great hiatus from all the running.  Very low impact and easy on the joints.  It will feel great.  Maybe not as great as a dip in the lake, but great just the same.  And did I ever tell you that I'm actually a mermaid?  Well, I am.

Day 11- Group X
How about a groupie?  A circuit training class?  Zumba?  Step?  Ripped?  There are tons of great drop in fitness classes.  Try one- you never know, you just might love it.

Day 12- Bring it in...
...with a run!  We started with a run and we'll finish with a run.  For me, running parallels the journey that has been my life this year.  No matter what, no matter how good or bad or up or down, it started with a run, and it will end with a run...and a smile on my face.  Training has started and stopped and restarted.  Marathons have been started and fiinished.  Goals have been set, re-vamped, met and re-set.  As you reflect on the year that has been the past, do yourself a favour, give yourself a gift and make the promise to YOURSELF for the new year.  Put on your running shoes, take the first step and just keep going.  JUST KEEP GOING.

1 comment:

Christine said...

Love it! Great ideas and I need to work off my Santa belly!