We’ve all done it. By the time New Year’s Day rolls around, our overindulgence in holiday goodies has us making crazy-aggressive resolutions to get fit and lose weight. We then ditch those resolutions because what’s required to hit those ridiculous goals is simply not sustainable. But please don’t beat yourself up! There are better, easier ways to stay fit during the holiday season. You already know you need to eat right and exercise, but that doesn’t mean you have to eat only celery sticks and run 10 miles a day. Small and consistent daily efforts will keep your health in check.
Starting right now, do some form of exercise every day. Ideally, you’ll want to do a mix of cardio and weight training to get the best results, but just making an extra effort to move and get your blood pumping is your daily goal. There are so many choices when it comes to exercise, so do what you enjoy most–even if it’s a simple walk. You can increase your stamina and heart health by simply turning your 20 minute walk into 30 minutes, then 40, and so on. The key is to do it daily. Soon, you may find that you’ll have enough stamina to jog a little bit during your walks. Mix it up and do some other fun cardio exercises, too. And if you include an exercise buddy, it will help keep you both accountable.
Other good ideas for cardio include:
If you enjoy dancing, then you’ll love Zumba classes. It is a super fun way to get a great workout. (Harbor Club currently offers Zumba classes on Tuesdays, so take advantage of those!)
We are so lucky to have such a fantastic golf course at our disposal. If you do a lot of walking while playing, then you are getting in some great cardio. The bonus? Swinging that golf club will help you get in some strength-training too.
Inside or out, we’ve got you covered if you want to get some steps in. We’ve got state-of-the-art treadmills in our new fitness center, as well as a new ¼-mile track and a one-mile hiking trail at our new Grove amenity center.
We have 27 miles of well-maintained roads in our community, so grab your bike and get pedaling.
Playing tennis is an excellent cardio workout. If you’ve never played before, we offer clinics to help you get started.
This fast-growing sport offers much of the same cardiovascular benefits of tennis. We have three pickleball courts and offer group play on Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays.
Ideas for strength-training include:
Yoga is a wonderful weight-bearing exercise that can help strengthen and lengthen your muscles. It’s an awesome way to condition your body in a gentle way. (We offer separate yoga classes for both men and women, so feel free to join in!)
- Weight machines
Our new fitness facility at The Grove offers state-of-the-art strength training equipment and free weights to help you pump that iron. Those who want to bulk up should aim for heavier weights and less reps. Those who want to simply tone their muscles should aim for less weight and more reps.
- Fitness stations – The Grove also has a groomed trail with fitness stations installed. As you make your way through the ¼-mile loop, stop and try each one to get some strength training in with your cardio.
Tips for eating right
With so many delicious goodies at hand, we know it’s very challenging to keep your calories in check during the holiday season, but here are a few tips to avoid going overboard:
- Before heading out to a party, eat a healthy snack. By the time you get to your destination, you’ll feel less hungry and will consume less as a result.
- Drink eight glasses of water a day.
- Try to limit your alcohol intake to one drink a day.
- Instead of having an extra cup of coffee, switch to a cup of tea instead (sans cream and sugar, of course.)
- Don’t feel compelled to finish an entire dessert. Sometimes just a few bites will do.
- Listen to your body and stop eating as soon as you begin to feel full.
- Bring healthy dishes to potluck dinners.
- Going to a buffet? Don’t overdo it. Take advantage of the soup and salad first, and then go back for small servings of your high-calorie favorites. You’ll be surprised at how satisfied you can be with smaller portions after eating healthier foods first.
- Watch your sugar intake — it’s in everything.
So start today! Make these small efforts to eat right and enjoy all the great fitness facilities that Harbor Club has to offer, and do it every single day. Come New Year ’s Day, you’ll be glad you did.