How it is done
- Walking boosts mood. The mood-enhancing benefits of walking can make you manage the mental stress of the holidays.
- Walking burns calories. It can make you maintain a healthy weight — even after indulging in that large holiday meal. There's nothing like a walk after a carb-laden feast. In fact, one study found that taking a 20-minute walk after a meal helps lower blood-glucose levels in people with diabetes.
- Walking can be fun. A game of badminton or horseshoes with guests can provide laughs and exercise. In winter in many parts of the country, the weather provides bonus activities to make you stay active.
- Walking is a good way to spend time with your loved ones. Instead of sitting on the couch watching tv, get outside and play a game together or go for a walk.
How to fit it in
Stay active over holidays with these ideas
- At home: Cleaning the house is one way to build physical activity into your day. Burn calories by vacuuming and dusting, scrubbing the kitchen and bathroom floors, decluttering the garage, or cleaning up the yard and scrubbing down the outdoor furniture. Once the house is clean, invite your friends and family over for a bowling tournament using your fitness-oriented video-game system. Or set up outdoor games and enjoy your beautiful company.
- At community facilities do something you don't usually do, such as a new class or different type of exercise equipment. You can also visit your local swimming pool to swim laps.
- In the great outdoors: Around the holiday season, take a walk around your neighborhood to view the decorations. When the weather is agreeable, go for a hike at a local park or nature preserve. Should you live near the ocean, take a walk along the beach.
Making the effort to move regularly during a holiday weekend — or season — may seem like a challenging task to add to your growing to-do list. However, it will make you feel better and avoid weight gain, which could prevent added stress later on.