Holidays and Fitness
Real Pilates reveals quick and effective full-body Pilates workouts on-the-go to stay fit during the holiday season indulgences
The holiday season is upon us. There is shopping to be done, gifts to be wrapped and parties to host, and yet, are you getting your workouts in? It’s natural to put your workouts on hold during the holiday season. Starting with Halloween and all the way to New Year’s Eve, most people put it off until the New Year, adding exercise and fitness to a long list of New Year resolutions.
Unknown to most, falling out of a regular exercise cycle can lead to a plethora of health-related problems including, weight gain, higher stress levels, poor eating habits, and it is much harder to get back into a regular routine after the holidays are over.
For many UAE residents, globetrotting off to an exciting winter holiday destination is the definition of a perfect festive season. However, Reza Alavi, Founder, and Managing Director revealed that exercise during the holiday season could be challenging, but totally worth it. “Even during the holidays there will be days when you one indulge in one too many pieces of cake and you will miss your workouts. Don’t kick yourself, instead, follow easy to do home mat exercises and follow a routine to stay on track,” says Reza.
What can you do to maintain routine and enjoy the holidays?
Schedule your exercise sessions every day and make sure you go!
Early morning workouts are the perfect tactic to ensure that you get your workouts out of the way first thing in the morning. It is so easy for other holiday obligations to interfere with your exercise routine when you wait until the later day hours.
Eat plenty of fruits and vegetables every day.
Eating a huge salad filled with you fresh fruits, vegetables, and nuts before you leave for a holiday dinner has amazing benefits. It can leave you feeling full and makes it less likely you will overindulge on those Christmas goodies.
Don’t hang out at the food table during a party.
You are less likely to overindulge if you get a plate and walk away.
Don’t drink all your calories.
Avoid drinks that are high in calories, like- Eggnog, Apple cider, and Christmas beverages, since these can quickly add to your daily caloric consumption.
Schedule some of your family excursions to include a little movement. Exercise with the entire family. Take them for a Pilates class; take the kids out to the park and involve them in games, etc.
Your at home Pilates moves for the holiday season:
- Swimming Preps: Swimming Prep is an excellent exercise to improve core stability and strengthen shoulder girdle. To begin, kneel down with hands directly under shoulders and knees under the hips, keeping your spine in a neutral position. Reach one arm forward and the opposite leg back, gently engaging the abdominals to keep the spine neutral. Bring yourself back to the initial position and repeat the exercise with opposite hand and leg. Watch for not sinking in the lower back or between the shoulders or rotating the body. Repeat 5-10 times.
- Side Kicks: The sidekicks are great for building core stability while strengthening your thighs, especially your glutes. This exercise is not about how far or high you can kick your leg, but how still your body can remain while your legs move freely. To begin, lie on your side with ribs and hips aligned, and bring your legs slightly in front of your body (bend your bottom leg for extra support if needed). Rest your head on your bottom arm and place your top hand on the mat in front of your abs, making sure your shoulders relaxed and stable. Next, raise your top leg to hip level. Keeping your torso stable and muscles around your waist tight, inhale as you flex your foot and swing your leg forward, and exhale as you point your foot and press your leg back. Repeat 8-10 times and then switch sides.
- Tricep dips: The tricep dip uses your body weight to strengthen and tone your triceps, which are very useful muscles needed for everyday functional movements such as lifting yourself out of a chair, getting up from a lying position, and pushing a heavy door. When done correctly, this exercise will help reduce stubborn underarm jiggle, and can also strengthen your shoulders and improve overall posture. To begin, sit on the floor with your knees bent, and feet and hands flat on the floor with your fingers facing forward. Next, lift your hips off the floor, and slowly and gently bend your elbows directly behind you and as far as comfortable to lower your body, keeping your chest lifted, your shoulders down and abs engaged. Push yourself back up by fully straightening your arms and not just lifting your hips. Repeat 12-20 times.
Real Pilates has two locations: Palm Strip mall in Jumeirah and ONE JLT building in Jumeirah Lakes Towers. Classes start from AED85 and packages are available.