Fitness Friday: Stay FIT with HIIT this Holiday Season

Melissa Bonner

The sights, shopping stress and especially the smells that make up the “most wonderful time of the year” can make it a real challenge to keep up with your fitness goals. While we might all want to act like Santa, come Dec. 26 - stuffed with cookies, napping in a big recliner - instead, challenge yourself to unwrap the gift of fitness.

It starts with a simple plan, a dash of discipline, and voila, you’ll be able to both enjoy the holidays, and indulgences that come with them, and keep up with your personal wellness goals!

Step 1: Make yourself a priority this holiday season. We spend so much time planning and scheduling scores of holiday parties and gatherings, we neglect ourselves and our fitness. Rather than throwing in the towel and starting over after the new year, restructure your workouts. Don’t have time for the gym? You can get an intense workout in your own living room in 20 to 30 minutes that helps keep you energized throughout the day, the week, and right into the new year.

Step 2: Have a workout plan. HIIT (high intensity interval training) is a quick, highly effective way to train your body. HIIT training focuses on intervals of intense bursts of activity followed by short recovery periods. These workouts are designed to get your heart rate up and burn fat - and cookies - in a short amount of time. The best part? You don't need equipment. Your bodyweight will provide just as intense a workout, trust me.

Step 3: That dash of discipline. Schedule 20-30 minutes for yourself and stick to your plan. Give yourself a little space to move, have some water nearby, and HIIT this workout with all the holiday spirit you can muster!

Warmup: 3-5 minutes (jog in place, jumping jacks, high march, squats, walkouts)

Perform each exercise for 45 seconds with 15 seconds of rest in between.

1. High Knees (engages core, works the legs, gets the heart rate up)

2. Mountain Climbers (improves mobility while working multiple muscle groups))

3. Squat Jumps (tones quads, calves, glutes, hamstrings, and core)

4. Push Ups (strengthens lower back, core, triceps, pectorals, and shoulders)

5. Fast Feet (improves speed and agility)

Aim to repeat all moves 4-6 times through. Make sure to cooldown and stretch properly at the end of this workout.

In this season of giving, plan for and give yourself the gift of staying on track with your fitness goals. Wishing you a Merry Fitmas and a Happy New Rear!

Melissa Bonner is a Fitness Instructor at Privé-Swiss Fitness, an award-winning, upscale, boutique fitness studio, located at 1587 Boston Post Road, Westbrook, 757 Boston Post Road, Madison and 57 Main St., Ivoryton (coming soon); phone: 860-391-8735; website:

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