It’s that time of year again. Mariah Carey and Michael Buble are dominating your car radio, your local shopping centre is gleaming with golds, silvers and reds and you’re counting down the days until you can close your laptop for a few days of a well-earned break.
Christmas time in Aotearoa is like no other. The pōhutukawa trees bloom as the smell of BBQ’s float along the beaches and an aura of calmness is in the air as we settle into our summer break. With the holiday calendar packed with festive gatherings, family parties and summer BBQs, sometimes we can forget about our physical health and wellness.
We've put together a few Kiwi Christmas tricks to keep you in touch with your wellness journey over the holidays.
BBQ Body Builder – Can you hear the sounds of sausages sizzling already? We know the type, the people that love to take control of the BBQ and show off their skills to their whānau and friends. This summer, they can BBQ in peace knowing that with every flip of a burger, they’ll be building their muscles too.
The act of grilling gets you outdoors. A lot of parents toss around a Frisbee or kick a ball around the grass with their kids while grilling dinner. The act of cooking and eating outdoors encourages more activity, which we all know is just an added health bonus to go along with your delicious dinner.
Christmas Cooking – Dinners over the holiday season are sometimes bigger than normal with a lot more variety than your average evening meal. One way to continue your wellness journey is to make sure that, as well as the Christmas puds, Ferrero Rochers and HellersSnags, there’s a mixture of fruits and vegetables that will allow your body to keep running at a good pace. A well-balanced diet doesn’t have to be boring though, so go grab your favourite Christmas Cookbook and get creative!
Festival Feels – New Zealand has an abundance of Summer festivals. Ranging from family-friendly summer gigs to the sounds of drum and bass and everything in between, there’s one thing we know for sure, you’ll want to join in on some if not all. Whether you’re going to a festival with your Nan, your partner or with your little ones, everyone will want to dance the day away somewhere and, according to the professionals at WebMD, “Dancing is a fun, whole-body workout. It's good for your heart, it makes you stronger, and it can help with balance and coordination.”
Present Power – Wrapping presents can be tedious, but when you’re powering through those gifts, alongside your favourite music being played, it can be made into quite the resistance workout.
Though many of us like to sit down at the table whilst curating the perfectly wrapped gift, it’s quite easy to move your body at the same time. By standing up whilst wrapping, you’ll allow your blood flow to reach evenly throughout your body. If you have an exercise ball to sit on, you can also do small exercises to engage your core at the same time.
Sand Stormer – As the kids are out of school and your work laptop is closed, for most families, this is the perfect time to hit the beach. Want to get your thigh muscles pumping? Take the kids and the dog for a run at the beach and feel the sand storm between your toes. Looking to strengthen your back? Aotearoa is surrounded by stunning waters for you and your whānau to swim in, making our country the perfect natural gym to keep you active this holiday season.
Rest – At the end of the day, it’s OK if you fall out of your routine, rest and recharging the batteries is what we all need at this time of year. Don’t beat yourself up. Remember that something is always better than nothing and focus on the little wins and keeping physical activity you do partake in fun for you and everyone you enjoy it with!