By Kelly Boyle, University Recreation & Wellness, Group Fitness Instructor
Going home for Thanksgiving break and don’t know what you will do without RecWell? Just because you won’t have access to RecWell’s facilities and programs doesn’t mean you can’t work out! Here are some fun ideas on how to keep up with your workouts and stay active during Thanksgiving (or Winter) break:
1. Watch TV.
Yep; you read that right. Sometimes watching TV/videos can be good for you. Today, there are so many at-home workouts at your fingertips. Youtube, Google, or even look on your TV’s On Demand, as they all all provide hundreds of workout ideas or even group fitness classes of your choosing! There’s yoga, cardio kickboxing, abs and low back, HIIT, Zumba, and just about anything else you could ask for. Just clear some space in your living room, turn on your favorite music, and you can follow the video as if you never left UMD! You could also use TV time to work on mobility and recovery, by stretching, foam rolling, or icing sore muscles.
2. Go outdoors.
Before the winter cold hits, try being active outside! You could go for a run or bike ride, play sports with your neighbors or friends, or simply walk around your town. If you plan on traveling, try feet-first sight seeing and walk around instead of using mass transportation. Getting fresh air does tremendous things for not only your physical well-being but also your mental health! Especially during Thanksgiving, a lot of states/cities have a Turkey Trot, a 5k run or walk the morning of Thanksgiving which is a fun way to get moving!
3. Find a workout buddy.
Two is better than one! Try to enlist a friend or family member as your exercise buddy while you’re home. If you don’t have weights at home, try resistance bands or rope with your partner which can act as your weighted resistance. Encourage each other to stay active, build a social support network, and engage in workouts that you couldn’t do alone!
4. Set a challenge.
Set a goal or challenge yourself to complete something specific this break. Whether it involves trying a new exercise each day, going up in weights, trying out new yoga poses, increase flexibility, or trying to master the body roll in Hip Hop Shake, any challenge is a good one! Setting goals now will help prep you when it comes time for finals when you have to challenge yourself to finish 4 papers, take 5 exams, and somehow sleep, eat, and stay active all during the same time period.
5. Take a pet for a walk.
It’s tough to not love a workout when it involves your favorite pet. Even if you don’t have a pet, your neighbors may take you up on the opportunity to take theirs out for a walk which could score you an extra few dollars in exchange!
6. Exercise while running errands.
Shopping during the holiday break, whether it’s for food, winter holidays, or Black Friday, seems unavoidable. Be an aerobic shopper by taking an extra lap around the store, defensive shuffling around crowds, taking the stairs instead of escalator, or power walking through the mall. Each time you make a purchase, rty getting some extra steps by taking your bags back to the car and then go back inside.
All of these are unexpected ways to get your heart rate up and the extra steps you take can really make a difference! But remember- it is a break after all. Make time for rest too and enjoy your time off.