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5 benefits of exercising with your family this holiday season

Consider jumping on an exercise class together, or helping a loved one get set up for exercise, while you’re home for the Holidays. 

For many of us, this might be our first holiday season together in two years. We’ve been so focused on our health when it comes to COVID — disinfecting, limiting exposure, pushing off travel plans — that we may have forgotten about our health when it comes to the basics of exercise.

According to the American Hotel and Lodging Association, 72% of Americans were unlikely to travel during Thanksgiving 2020, and 69% were unlikely to travel during Christmas 2020.

Even though 2021 has been a challenging year for many, thanks to vaccines and social distancing measures, travel numbers will likely go up over the 2021 holiday season.

For those of us meeting our families and friends for the first time in (potentially) quite a while — we suggest adding some physical activity to your holiday festivities. Not only does staying active during the winter help us feel better in our bodies (thank you endorphins!) — but talking about exercise routines, or getting set up to try exercise at home — can also help.

Fortunately, this doesn’t need to feel like a chore. Read on for our recommendations on why to incorporate exercise into your holiday season.

1. It’s a great way to help people in your life get set up with technology

There are many benefits of online exercise programs — like being able to exercise anytime and at home. But to get started with an online fitness program, you typically need to create an account. 

If you have a friend or family member who’s interested in online exercise, but needs some help setting up their account or writing down their password — that’s a great thing to help out with, between Thanksgiving football games and parades.

Once you do get set up with an account — you won’t need to dream up your own exercises or routines. Usually, you can simply press play and follow along with your program of classes, week by week on most platforms. For example, at Bold, we teach guided programs as short as two weeks and as long as 12 weeks, so you can decide what length is right for you.

2. You can try a short fitness assessment together

There are very few ways to measure your health without a trip to a doctors’ office, or expensive online testing kits. But if you’ve ever wondered how your balance or strength stacks up to people in your age group, give it a try this holiday season. You might be surprised by your results! Bold will recommend classes based on your results so you can improve or maintain where you are.

3. You can avoid the politics

Alicia Rios, Bold’s Head Trainer, recommends exercise as a healthy way to help us through the often divisive conversations that happen around the holidays, like elections and politics.

“Physical activity can get our endorphins flowing, it makes us feel good and happier,” Alicia says. “When you’re physically active or perform regular exercises, you can improve your energy, mood, self-confidence, and sleep, and decrease the likelihood of symptoms associated with anxiety, depression, and stress. This allows you to face life and hard conversational topics with confidence, and a more optimistic/clear mind.” 

To maximize the benefits of mental health, experts recommend 30 minutes or more a day of exercise, 3–5 times a week. But even exercising for 10–15 minutes if that’s all you have to spare, can make a difference.

4. It can be a good way to get to know people better

Take a poll around the dinner table, or find 20 minutes after exchanging gifts to invite anyone who’s interested to take a short online class with you. Maybe a family member or friend you don’t know as well will be down to try it — so it’s a good way to get to know them better. It’s fine if not everyone wants to participate. Workouts can still be a lot of fun with 1–2 people! 

5. After 2020, and 2021, we’re used to shaking things up — right?

Think of all the events and things that have happened in 2020 and 2021. Many of us picked up an unexpected hobby, or found ways to connect with people over Zoom when maybe we hadn’t done that before, or fell in love with something we used to do — like gardening, art or quilting. So, why not add fitness and health to that mix — shaking it up a little bit?

There you have it — our recommendations for exercise and health over the holidays.

Plus — we’re offering a 60 day free trial of Bold Premium (our best offer of the year) to anyone who signs up before December 31, 2021. Sign up today by making an account at agebold.com/get60.