There is no secret that the holiday season increases the stress levels significantly. We have parties to plan, meals to cook, gifts to get, and a myriad of other things to do. It is no wonder that many people claim this as the most stressful time of the year. The good news is that you are in the right place. Exercise is the best medicine for anxiety and according to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America, regular exercise works as well (if not better) than medication. The other great remedy for stress is to be social with those you care about.
This article is going to provide some simple exercises to reduce stress and even suggest how to work them into your busy schedule while challenging your friends.
There are thousands of exercises that can be done from the comfort of your home. I am a huge fan of random acts of fitness. Throughout those days that I know I am very busy, I like to take five minutes and hit the ground for some pushups, sit ups, or bodyweight squats.
One fun way to do this is to recruit a fitness partner. I know it sounds ridiculous, “you want me to find time to work out during this time of year AND coordinate with someone else to work out with!” It is not as impossible as it sounds.
Currently, many of us can find the time to text our friends or update our social networks from our smart phones, why not add value to these interactions. Every so often send a group of friends a fitness challenge text that can be done in five minutes or less. For example, “you have until 3:30 to do three minutes of planks.”
Take turns amongst one another to challenge each other and it adds a touch of surprise and accountability.
Some ideas are:
Planks for time
Iron Chair for a time where you place your back against a wall or door frame and lower your body until your upper legs are parallel to the floor and hold that position for a set time frame.
Pushups (pick different variations: diamond, wide arm, staggered hands) and choose a number. For example, three sets of diamond pushups and do 20 each set.
Chair/counter dips where you put your back up to the counter and put the palms of your hands on the counter and lower yourself until your upper arms are parallel to the floor and then raise yourself back up getting a good burn in your triceps.
Also try to see else you can come up with to make it a fun challenge for your friends.