The holidays are typically spent cozied around the Christmas tree or fireplace. “The winter holiday season beckons us to eat and drink more and move less,” says Ellsworth Buck, Vice President of GreatFlorida Insurance, Florida’s leading independent homeowners insurance agency.
This holiday, celebrate outside. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services reports 80% of adults and youth fail to meet the recommended amount of daily movement needed to stave off chronic disease. This is especially important during a pandemic.
This year consider adding movement to your holiday traditions. Preparing food, buying gifts and placing decorations have all become more convenient and more sedentary robing us of basic motion. “A more active lifestyle contributes to a greater quality of life,” says Ellsworth Buck, Vice President of GreatFlorida Insurance, Florida’s top independent homeowners insurance agency.
“Body movement is an essential part of preventing and managing many diseases. Stepping, bending, twisting, lifting, reaching and pulling motions are integral to our body (and its parts) working well. Luckily, workouts are not the only way to increase your daily movement. You can pepper physical activity into daily life and certainly fit some into your celebrations,” says author and biomechanist Katy Bowman in an article for NPR.
Below are some of her suggestions to get moving this holiday season.
- Forage for décor-Go outside and collect pinecones or seashells to decorate with, be creative.
- Walk to get groceries-Walk to the store for a light shopping trip. If it is too far, park some distance from the entry.
- Plan a hiking advent-Plan daily hikes while kids are out of school. Make it a scavenger hunt, this will also get kids temporarily off their devices.
- Do some “old school” food prep-Ditch the conveniences and do things by hand to add healthy movement, shell nuts, knead dough and roll out pie crust.
- Organize a winter physical games night-Schedule a meet-up in the backyard and throw around a light up frisbee or play a game like corn hole.
- Stretch while you wrap gifts-If you are spending time wrapping, sit on the floor and move through a variety of positions.
- Celebrate around an outdoor fire-Building a fire provides movement and who doesn’t love to socialize around a cozy fire?
- Take a walk to look at Christmas lights-Take a stroll through the neighborhood and admire your neighbors hard work.
- Volunteer dynamically-In addition to monetary donations pack-up meals at a local food bank or participate in a community clean-up.