The holidays are fast approaching, and that means holiday weight gain is also on the horizon. The average American gains between 5 and 10 pounds during the period between Thanksgiving and Christmas. With parties, family events, cookies, leftover Halloween candy, pumpkin spice lattes, eggnog lattes, and anything else that may tempt you. But if you start turning up a notch on your workouts, you may be able to keep the battle of the bulge to a minimum. Here are some of my favorite cardio workouts to sweat off those calories.
1) Insanity – This is one of my favorite ways to burn calories quickly and efficiently. You can get a really intensive workout in less than an hour and really see improvement in your stamina after just a few weeks. If you are uncertain, try out the Fitness Test and gauge where you are today. Then you can redo the test after a few weeks.
2) Fit Bit – This tool is a great way for you to keep track of how much you are burning and moving compared to the amount of calories you are taking in. As the holidays grow closer, it can be a good idea to increase the amount of steps you target for each day. If you jump from 10,000 steps per day to 15,000 will help you to burn a few extra calories every day and thus give you more room to consume. By adding an extra twenty-minute walk to your routine, you can get this in easily. I add a walk around my neighborhood at lunchtime, a great way to get some much-needed sunshine and get a bit of energy.
3) 30 day habit – There are a few different theories out there that say if you keep something up for a certain amount of time, it becomes a habit, and thus easier to commit to. This is a great time to commit to a new exercise habit, the best chance to see long-term results. By adding 20 minutes of cardio exercise to your day you can really see some major changes. This can be in addition to your regular exercise program, or just as an introduction to exercise.
Check out some of the 20-minute videos on Fitness Blender, YouTube or try a short DVD. Best to find something that has a bit of flexibility, so you don’t have to do the same routine every day. Remember to take at least one day off every week so that your muscles can recover. And take it easy if you are under the weather. You want to build up your cardio fitness, not over train and injure yourself.