Holiday Fitness: how not to fall off the sleigh

Mon Dec 20, 2010 6:03am EST
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By Dorene Internicola

NEW YORK (Reuters Life!) - Hollywood trainer Erin O'Brien approaches the challenge of holiday fitness in a spirit of peace, good cheer and negotiation.

"I make a bargain with myself," said O'Brien, a group exercise specialist and personal trainer for 20 years. "I must do a good workout if I'm going to a holiday party."

For O'Brien, creator of the Strong Body, Fit Body DVD workout, it's important to try to maintain a workout routine over the holidays to avoid bah humbugging in the New Year.

"Give yourself the gift of exercise," she said, even if you cut down on workout time. "Just do the best you can."

Many fitness experts echo O'Brien. Be active, they urge the seasonally stressed fitness fanatic, but also be flexible and forgiving in the whirl of holiday temptations and disruptions.

New York City-based nutritionist Joy Bauer is a fan of the selective splurge.

"I choose a few special meals and parties that I'm looking forward to and plan to indulge at those celebrations," said Bauer, creator of the DVD Slimdown Workout. "The rest of the season, I stick to my normal, healthy eating and exercise habits."

Bauer said even a 30-minute daily walk can keep at bay those extra holiday pounds and tame the seasonal stress that so often attends the comfort and joy of family get-togethers.   Continued...

<p>Clients work out on machines at a fitness facility in Arvada, Colorado in this June 15, 2009 file photo. REUTERS/Rick Wilking</p>