Tips to Stay Fit Over Christmas

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Tips to Stay Fit Over Christmas

By JV Valderama

It is the most wonderful time of the year, Christmas is fast approaching. However, as we are busy spending this short Christmas break socializing with family and friends, the time for exercising is a luxury. That being said, take charge of your well-being by doing high-intensity interval training, or HIIT. Enjoy celebrating with family, catching up with old friends, gift shopping, and running personal errands without worrying about your health.


HIIT is a short, high-intensity exercise that benefits weight loss and muscle building by targeting your core, upper body, and lower body for a full-body workout. Read on to learn about 10-minute standing HIIT exercises you can do at home to stay fit this holiday.

Perks of Doing HIIT this Christmas 


Many standing HIIT exercises, such as clap jacks, squat crunch, and curtsy lunges, take up only 10-30 minutes of your time. Compared to a traditional longer workout, you can finish your HIIT  after 4-6 reps followed by a low-intensity recovery exercise. 


Here are some reasons why short, high-intense exercises are the best workouts this holiday period:

Less Time Consuming


With a simple 10-minute exercise, reaching your fitness goal while devoting time to your family and friends is possible. There's no reason for you to say "I don't have time to exercise now," if you have at least 10 minutes to spare.

Manage the Christmas Rush


Celebrating the festive season can be stressful with gift shopping, decorating your Christmas tree, catching up with friends, office parties, and much more. Exercise might be a good way to manage and destress over the festive period. What's great is you don't need to allot an hour-long workout every day to get these benefits, Personal Trainer  Kelly Keck explains. 

Liberty at Home


It also doesn't help that shoppers are out and about scoring Christmas deals. Surely, you don't want to get entangled in this chaos and be stuck in traffic on the way to the gym. HIIT workouts offer practicality and efficiency by letting you exercise at home or around the vicinity. Additionally, a standing HIIT workout does not need any equipment to get the results you want. 


5 Standing Exercises Under 10 Minutes


Stay fit and healthy this holiday season by performing these simple standing full-body exercises you can do under 10 minutes:

Clap Jacks

(Image by bublikhaus on Freepik)

 

1. With your arms by your sides, stand straight.
2. Jump up as you raise your arms high until they are almost clapping while spreading your feet wider than your hips.
3. Jump once more to reunite your feet and lower your arms.

Tips

• Doing 10 minutes of clap jacks burns almost 100 calories. 
• Split this exercise throughout the day.
• Integrate it into your routine three times a week. 

    Benefits

    • Tones up muscles such as the biceps, triceps, and calves. 
    • Builds lower body strength. 
    • Stimulate heart muscles for better blood flow. 

      Front Kicks


      (Image by Sworkit)

      1. Stand and extend your arms straight in front of you.
      2. While keeping your core engaged, lift your left knee towards the ceiling.
      3. Straighten your leg by extending your left knee.
      4. Bend your knee again to return to your starting position. Repeat several times.
      5. Do the same movement on your right leg. 

        Tips

        • Rest for 10 secs after every after reps.
        • Kick higher and slowly lower your legs for intensity.

          Benefits

          • Strengthens hamstrings, gluteus muscles, and hip flexors.
          • Improves balance and coordination in the body.

            Pulsing Lunges


            1. Stand and step forward with your front foot 2–4 feet in front of your rear foot.
            2. Place your hands on your hips and tighten your core.
            3. Lower down partially by bending the hip, knee, and ankle of your front leg.
            4. Continue to lower yourself until your front leg is parallel to the ground.
            5. Pulse up and down by performing a lunge going up and down by about 3 inches.

              Tips

              • Perform one set of 16 to 20 pulses on each side.
              • Beginners start with 8-10 pulses on each side per set.

                Benefits

                • Strengthens glutes and hamstrings.
                • Improves flexibility and balance.

                  Squat Crunch


                  (Image by PopSugar)

                  1. Place your feet slightly wider than hip-width apart on the floor.
                  2. Place your hands behind your head, and elbows bent out to your sides.
                  3. Squat down or lower yourself to a 45-degree angle.
                  4. Stand as you lift your bent right knee toward your right elbow, and crunch your obliques on your right side.
                  5. Revert the squat position and switch to the left side to crunch the left obliques.

                    Tips

                    • Execute 10-12 reps of squat crunches on each side.
                    • Try not to crunch too high to avoid injury.
                    • Begin at a slow tempo while keeping the abs engaged throughout the routine.

                      Benefits

                      • Squat crunch targets the abdominal muscles (abs) and the quadriceps (quads).
                      • Provides stability in your core and lower body.
                      • Tones up your abdominal muscles.

                        Curtsy Lunges

                        (Image by BeTheBetter)

                        1. Stand with feet hip-width apart, and hands on hips.
                        2. Step back while putting your weight on your right leg and cross it behind your left foot–like you’re curtsying.
                        3. Lower your hips while bending your knees, and continue until your left thigh is almost parallel to the ground.
                        4. Lift and return to the starting position, then repeat on the other side.

                          Tips

                          • Beginners start with 3 sets of 8–10 reps.
                          • Maintain a straight upper body while lunging down.
                          • Keep your legs parallel to the ground when curtsying.

                          Benefits 

                          • Curtsy lunges are great if you want to tighten your glutes.
                          • It keeps your butt lifted and firm.
                          • Offers leg strength for improved body support.

                            Conclusion

                            The holiday season is the perfect opportunity to enjoy festivities, and maintain good relationships with family and friends. Although it is hard to fit your workout routine into your busy Christmas schedule, doing the short exercises above accompanied by proper time management, health is at hand.