By Meghan Eoff, Nutritionist and Dietetic Intern @medwithmegs
The holiday season can be a busy time, but let it also be a time where you switch things up in your workout and your mindset. Whether you’re tired of the same workout, the cold weather, and/or the crammed schedule, you don’t have to let go of your fitness goals. Instead, shift your workout and mindset.
This workout will have you singing along and feeling thankful. This full-body workout can be done at-home or at the gym, can be used with or without equipment (home-item replacements are mentioned as well), can be modified for any fitness level, takes less than 40 minutes to complete, and will keep you engaged! The holiday season is often a time to express gratitude, shift the gratitude towards yourself as well! Before beginning this workout, take 2-5 minutes to express gratitude towards your body. Simply put: you may not be able to run a marathon, but you’re able to do one of these activities, and THAT is where it counts.
Use exercise to find your inner strength and to show respect for all that your body does for you!
This workout includes 12 Christmas exercises while listening to Christmas music! The trick here- listening to Christmas workout music, not your traditional Christmas music. Go on Youtube, Spotify, SoundCloud, Apple Music, or your preferred music streaming platform and search something along the lines of “Christmas Workout Music.” Choose whichever playlist you want, as long as it exceeds 35 minutes, and get ready to be in a merry mood!
You will complete each activity three times, with 30 seconds each round, and breaks in between. Ex. 30 seconds bicep curls (round 1), 15 second break, 30 second bicep curls (round 2), 15 second break, 30 second bicep curls (round 3), 1 minute break. Next activity. You can either workout in the order provided below, pick a number out of a hat, roll dice, or ask Siri, Alexa, etc. to pick a number 1-12 and move along the list accordingly. Lastly, instead of using weights, you can use canned goods or cartons of milk/juice from your home.
The 12 Exercises of Christmas:
12: Brilliant bicep curls
- Keep your elbows tucked to your side and your shoulders back
11: Ice skaters
- See how high and far you can leap to one side
- Modification: step instead of leap
10- Holly hamstring lifts
- Lay on your back with your palms facing down on the floor. Place one of your calves on the medicine ball and the other foot on the medicine ball.
- Lower/dip your leg, then squeeze your glutes, hamstring & core to lift your leg up. You can also use both legs at the same time vs alternating every 15 seconds each round.
- If you don’t have a medicine ball, use a chair with a pillow or your couch instead.
9- Blitzen burpees
- Squat jump to tricep pushup
- Modification: step throughout the process rather than jump and in a cohesive manner
8- Prancer push ups
- Modification: use a counter top or lower your knees to the ground
7- Christmas cross over knee jacks, alternating & standing
- This is a great exercise to sign along to! Keep your back straight, head up, and use your obliques to twist. Aim for your elbow & knee to be aligned.
6- Spirited squat to punch (alternating punch)
- Move at your preferred pace. The faster you move, the harder the workout.
5- Walking lunges through the Winter Wonderland
- Keep your leading knee behind your leading toe
- Optional: instead of holding a dumbbell, you can also use a kettlebell and swing under the leading leg
4- Santa’s side leg lifts
- Another great activity to sing along to!
3- Sleigh the sumo squat
- Wide stance with feet facing forward; keep your chin up
2- Peaceful plie squat
- Wide stance with feet facing outwards, tuck your tailbone in & engage your core
1- Jolly jumping jacks
- Use light weights if possible
- Modification: step out one leg at a time