How to Exercise During the Busiest Time of Year
Between dashing to a gathering and scrolling for the perfect gift late into the evening, the holiday season is the most challenging time of the year to stay on track with exercise.
Clare Barry, an exercise physiologist at Northwestern Medicine Executive Health and Northwestern Medical Group, shares her suggestions for how to fit in quick, efficient workouts during the busiest time of year.Fit in these quick, efficient workouts during the busiest time of the year.
The 7-minute workout
For those with very limited time to exercise, this workout routine is for you. According to the American College of Sports Medicine, this evidence-based workout can change your metabolism in just four minutes! Using strength training and aerobics, it incorporates 12 total body exercises. Expect to exercise hard for 30 seconds, rest for 10 seconds and repeat. No equipment is needed. Access a 7-minute workout video timer to get started.
Interval training on your at-home treadmill, stationary bike or elliptical
The major benefit of this type of aerobic exercise is that you get to determine the intensity and length. A good target is 20 minutes. Start with two minutes of light intensity followed by one minute at a higher intensity, and repeat. It’s that simple.
If you are a runner, alternate between two minutes of light jogging and one minute at your maximum intensity. If you prefer to walk, alternate between walking at a comfortable pace for two minutes and then power walk for one minute. Make your routine more challenging by increasing the speed or incline.
Stretch and de-stress with yoga
Try this 20-minute yoga routine to promote flexibility and mindfulness — great for beginners and those looking to find some quiet time during a hectic month.