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Fitness: Don’t let bad conscience ruin your holidays

December is usually a busy time of the year where the holidays tend to weigh more in people’s minds than health and fitness. Or, if it weighs heavily, it is usually in the form of bad conscience rather than because they spend a lot of time working out.

So, what can you do to not feel guilty during the holidays?

First thing: Get stuff done in the morning. Set the alarm 20 minutes earlier – or spend 20 minutes less getting ready – and opt for an intense 15 minute workout. 15 minutes a day of good intensity workout such as 5 minute warm up and three 3-minute rounds of circuit training including full body exercises will take you a long way. You can for example do 6 body weight exercises for 30 seconds each one right after the other.

1) Forward lunges
2) Push ups
3) Lateral lunges
4) Jumping Jacks
5) Split squats
6) Bent-over elastic band row

Secondly you could gather inspiration for your workouts after the holidays. Use this little break in your normal routine as an opportunity to make changes and optimize your workouts. There is a lot of stuff to be found on the internet. Both for free and that you pay for. And December is the time for good deals and promotions on health and fitness related material. There is for instance an event called the 12 Days of Fitness. It is a gift-giving event where top fitness professionals from all over the world have come together to each bring their gifts of health and fitness to those who want them. The gifts are made as downloadable files (video, audio or written articles and e-books) and they are all about subjects related to health and fitness such as workouts for all different kinds of goals, reports on different training methods, meal plans, fitness tips, mindset tips etc. You can, for instance, get a free core workout specifically to get you fit for skiing or you can get a workout plan designed specifically for pregnant women just to mention a few. Anybody can sign up to choose the gifts they want from the pool. The gift-giving starts on December 10 2009 and every day up until Christmas you can find new fitness gifts to download. That way you should be all set and ready to take action the most efficient way, if you want to get fit in the New Year. If your goal is to get fit for an upcoming event, for a specific sport, for better health, for greater looks or for whichever purpose, this event provides you with a chance to get what you need to get started, directly from the experts in each field.

Lastly, there is one final tip to help you through the holidays with a smile, yet without getting too much out of shape and feeling bad about. The idea is to help you stay moderate on all the holiday temptations. It is quite simple actually: Whenever you have one goodie, you also drink one big glass of water. After that you can smile, because that should put a natural limit to how many goodies you’ll feel like eating. Try it out and happy holidays.

Anja Bolbjerg, M.Sc. is a certified fitness professional, freelance writer, website editor of Anja is also a two-time Olympic finalist in moguls skiing, and the creator of the dvds: Skiing: Get Fit To Hit The Slopes and Trampo-Lean. She is a contributor to 12 Days Of Fitness