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Doc Talk: When it comes to working out, think differently about the holidays

Doc Talk Holiday fitness routine.PNG

Robyn Hesling said there are days when it’s difficult to find the time to make it in the gym, “especially when kids start getting out of school and routines start changing.”

Changing routines plus the stress of holiday shopping and food-filled gatherings and other demands of the season just might bump a trip to the gym to the bottom of your wish list.

Hesling works and juggles three children at home. She said she knows how difficult it is to manage a busy schedule.

“The thing is to keep the routine as best as possible and to forgive yourself those days you don’t make it in," she said.

Hesling said that's the attitude that helps her stay motivated, no matter the time of year. She said she also reminds herself how great she feels after working out.

Steve Ball, lead fitness specialist at the Ascension Borgess Health and Fitness Center, said it's necessary to think differently about the holidays.

“We have to think of the holidays as something that’s not just an excuse to take time off,” Ball said.

Research indicates, and many have experienced it, holiday weight gain is real. Plus, Ball said, if you’ve made any gains in the gym, too much time off can ruin any progress.

“Even if it’s just maybe my intensity is a little bit lower, that’s still better than not exercising or completely taking time off.”

He also suggested working out with family over the holidays or if you’ll be out of town, try to find a nearby gym.

When it comes to getting fit, staying fit and reaching your goals, consistency and dedication are key, Ball said.

“One day you overeat, that’s not going to completely throw you off," he said, "as long as you don’t make that the norm."

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