Matthew Wheat, founder of Superior Performance Training, Doctoral Student of Physical Therapy & Certified Strength & Fitness Specialist
The World Health Organization’s (WHO’s) current physical activity guidelines are 150-300 minutes of light to moderate exercise or 75 minutes of vigorous activity weekly, as well as participating in strength training twice/week, including exercises that stress all major muscle groups. Adherence to these guidelines can improve and preserve quality of life, reduce healthcare costs, and reduce the risk of all-cause mortality.
Learning a new sport or activity can be an exciting way to get exercise this winter. Examples include snowshoeing, cross-country skiing, or even getting together with friends to join a group exercise class.
When exercise does not feel like a chore, it makes adherence to a lifetime of physical activity much easier. Celebrate the holidays this year by implementing or maintaining the WHO’s physical activity guidelines. It can increase the number of holidays you get to spend with your loved ones.
Melodie Alexander, Owner of TM Fitness, Certified Personal Trainer & Certified Wellness Coach
Winters can be tough on our mind, body, and soul. But after many years of utilizing fitness and nutrition to fuel my health, I now feel the best I have overall in the winter months!
In addition to starting my day by setting myself up for success, noting what I’m thankful for (i.e. “a house full of kids and laughter”), what I will remember for tomorrow (i.e. “I am in control of my success and health”), and one word of the day (i.e. “FORWARD”), I also plan when I’ll do my workout and set out key points for my nutrition.
Moving and sweating takes care of a lot of those stress hormones naturally. Making good food choices continues to aid both my positive mindset and physical health.
Through the holidays, I always suggest if you enjoy certain sweets and meals, have a portion and be done with it so you don’t overindulge.
One of my core mantras is “If it doesn’t challenge you, it doesn’t change you.” Working with someone to keep you accountable and having long and short-term goals also helps set you up for success.
Kari Getschow, Licensed Athletic Trainer & Certified Personal Trainer at Synergy Fitness
With the holidays approaching, our routines can become cluttered with family commitments, holiday parties, and school performances. Though we may have good intentions to exercise, it can be difficult to make time. A proactive strategy is to write down your normal daily schedule. Be specific. For example, in the morning you get out of bed, brush your teeth, make your coffee, walk the dog, and check your email. The list continues until you go to bed. Circle or underline the healthy habits you can continue throughout the holiday season. Add new habits or specificity before the schedules get busy. For example, in the morning, after you brush your teeth and drink a cup of coffee, you go for a 30-minute walk/exercise, and then make breakfast.
Everyone’s schedule is different. Maintain an exercise habit that fits in your schedule. You can honor commitments to yourself by inviting family and friends to walk with you, or block exercise into your schedule as you would a standing appointment. Make a small and attainable fitness habit to maintain your health through the holiday season. Most people miss a day of exercise but focus on the next day to quickly return to their routine.
Connor Ryan, founder of Unity Human Performance and Unity Yoga Co-op & Certified Physical Preparation Specialist
It’s time to set the tone for winter. A simple daily discipline to help you open to the calmness of being in the present moment (in addition to incorporating moments of silence and gratitude first thing in the morning and before going to sleep), is breaking up the middle of your day both mentally and physically with movement.
With changing weather conditions, determination is required to persist in the variable elements. No matter your method, indoors or outdoors, consider and commit to moving your body daily for at least twenty to thirty minutes.
Some exercises I recommend to help keep fit are the squat, hinge, lunge, step up, horizontal push, horizontal pull, vertical push, vertical pull, and plank variation. If you don’t know these movements, it’s best to learn them from a professional. If you do know them, you can incorporate them into a daily routine that takes anywhere from twenty minutes to two hours.
Newton’s First Law: An object at rest will stay at rest, and an object in motion will stay in motion. Find a way. Keep moving forward to stay moving forward.
Excerpted from the Winter ’22 – ’23 issue of Health & Happiness U.P. Magazine. Copyright 2022, Empowering Lightworks, LLC. All rights reserved.