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The holidays are typically extremely busy and extremely indulgent.
All the holiday dinners coupled with holiday hospitality events and in short, health and fitness are not generally found at the top of Santa's list.
With December’s month long celebrations, often in excess, many people find themselves committing to firm New Year’s resolutions to get fit and lose weight.
It’s not surprising that many people struggle to maintain a healthy focus in December.
To enjoy the holiday celebrations and maintain a healthy focus, follow a few festive fitness guides and you’ll be ahead come January 1.
It is paramount you maintain your fitness program. One of the hardest things to do when your time is in short supply is to maintain an exercise routine.
If you usually exercise a few times a week, the additional demands on your time now can mean that something has to give. However, reduced training doesn’t mean that your fitness must plummet.
Research has shown that a couple of weeks of maintenance training can result in minimal or even no fitness losses.
In fact, in certain cases, performance can improve after a short period of reduced training because the body has the opportunity to recharge.
To reap the most benefits from maintenance training this month; plan, inform and execute.
This means, plan in some shorter and/or less frequent exercise sessions. Explain to your friends and family the changes you’re making but also the importance of keeping your fitness going and then put your plan into action.
Sharing your plans with your support systems helps keep you accountable.
Next, remember that a little exercise is better than none.
Accept that your workouts will be shorter now but also realize they still provide valuable benefits. For example, if you usually run 4 times/week, cutting your training days in half will maintain your fitness and still work the most important muscle in your body, your heart.
Or, instead of working out with two or three sets of resistance exercises, cut it down to one or two sets.
Your session will take less time but you’re still exercising the same muscles, so you will be maintaining hard earned strength gains.
Finally, maintain quality over quantity always.
If your usual exercise week includes some key training sessions, it is important to maintain them. However, in the interest of time, instead of alternating key workouts with lighter workout/recovery days focus on each session being high quality.
You can then omit the easier sessions, which will save time.
A recovery session now becomes a rest day.
The key to success with this strategy is to make sure you don’t let up on the quality of each workout.
So, next time you think you’ll take a break until after the holidays, remember, it’s easier to stay in shape than it is to get in shape!
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