Wednesday, November 28, 2012

‘Tis The Season! (To Prioritize Exercise)

If you’re like me, you’re still recovering from Thanksgiving.  Between 18 hours in the car to go over the river and thru the woods (or at least over three states and numerous highways), and four days of my family’s not-so-healthy-but-oh-so-delicious traditional dishes, I’m feeling  stuffed.  Stuffed and lazy.

Over the years I have found that the holiday season tends to be a time that exercise takes backseat, for both me and my clients.  Frankly, it’s totally understandable; the holidays are a busy time.  We have work and social functions galore, shopping to do, decorations to hang, church and school pageants to attend, and traveling to do.  And the food.  Oh the food!  This time of year we indulge in the special casseroles, sweets and drinks that only come around once per year (mmmmm Eggnog).  Having less time and being stuffed from fattening foods are hardly the ingredients for exercise.

All year I’m motivated to exercise.  I prioritize my workouts, I create schedules and make sure “GYM” is somewhere on my daily calendar.  But year after year, that motivation and dedication to making exercise a priority falls by the wayside like clockwork as Thanksgiving approaches.  At Thanksgiving my inner Fat Kid voice wakes-up and whispers, “You’re so good all year, don’t you just want to take a little break? Missing a couple workouts won’t kill you.  You can redouble your efforts in January.”  And of course my favorite Fat Kid refrain, “Just one more piece of _____, it’s a special time of year.”

It’s hard to want to exercise during the holidays.  We have less free time and frankly, lots of special activities that are a lot more fun than hitting the gym.  We are traveling or on vacation and out of our fitness routines.   Plus, we know January is right around the corner.   Our New Year’s Resolutions are already on our minds; our inner Fat Kid says, “Why not just wait until the 1st to worry about exercise?”
But this year is going to be different! This we’re going to silence our inner Fat Kids and create strategies for making time for exercise and for setting ourselves up for success in January.   We can still enjoy the holidays and make fitness a priority.  ‘Tis the season!    
Posted by Rachel May, School of Health Sciences


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Kaplan Center for Health and Wellness
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