Unlike a regular chocolate-filled advent calendar, the daily opening of a fitness advent calendar is a great way to keep fit this Christmas! (Don’t be […]
Unlike a regular chocolate-filled advent calendar, the daily opening of a fitness advent calendar is a great way to keep fit this Christmas!
(Don’t be too disappointed at the lack of chocolate… there’s plenty of the sweet stuff around this December!)
So let’s take a look at what one is, the benefits, and an expert’s view on how to do one yourself.
What is a Fitness Advent Calendar?
Essentially, it works like a regular advent calendar in the sense that you ‘open a door’ each day. But instead of chocolate, you get a simple fitness challenge which you must carry out.
These challenge are simple, but build in intensity as the month goes on. By the 25th day of December you’ll be feeling fit and strong – truly earning your Christmas dinner!
How does it work? There are many ways to prepare one. But, for example, on Day 1, you would do a 60-second plank. Then on Day 2, you’d do two minutes of body-weight squats. Day 3 is three sets of push ups. And so on for 25 days, with each day getting a little tougher.
Or you may have something like:
- 5 x jumping jacks
- 5 x sit ups
- 5 x press ups
- 5 x squats
That’s on the first day, then six of each on the second, seven on the third… and so on.
What are the Benefits?
There are several benefits to a fitness advent calendar:
- You’re keeping active through a dangerously calorific season!
- Regular exercise helps keep your festive stress levels low
- You’re taking some time out to do something for yourself in a very busy season
An Expert Opinion
Emma Atkinson from EmmaLouiseFitness (covering Swansea, Neath and Port Talbot) tells Fitness Swansea about the calendar she designed.
‘I find that a lot of people drop off from exercise in winter, so a fitness advent calendar is a great way to keep motivated as the nights start to draw in and the weather gets colder,’ Emma says.
‘If people can do something short and sharp it encourages them to do more – especially if they don’t have lots of time around Christmas.’
Emma added, ‘My workouts include a cardio move to get the heart-rate up, upper body, lower body and core strengthening. So although it’s short, everything gets covered.’
‘I chose the exercises that I use so that all abilities can have a go. My client base is quite varied and I wouldn’t want anyone to feel excluded. However, they are exercises that could be easily modified or made more advanced if you want an extra challenge.’
‘The calendar I’m doing this year is building up nicely to Christmas Eve, so that everyone giving it a go will have a good workout before all the festivities.’
Give it a Go!
While there are many out there, for beginners and general fitness enthusiasts take a look at Emma’s fitness advent calendar, or try creating your own!
For Fitness Swansea gym reviews, check out our dedicated gym reviews page.
| Reviewed by Chris Carra |
I have plenty of experience with the Swansea University gym as I am currently a member there – making me hugely qualified to write a review!
Despite the name, you don’t have to be associated with the university in any way (i.e. you don’t need to be a student to use it). It’s open to the public, and at a pretty competitive price.
The gym itself is actually quite small, compared to places like the LC and The Gym, but The Swansea University Gym is rarely rammed to the point that you have to wait for machines. So, in this case, small is sufficient.
That’s not to say it’s tiny – far from it. Cardio-wise you have a good selection of treadmills, rowing machines, bikes and cross-trainers. On the resistance side of the gym you have a decent area for free weights with enough utility benches to go around.
Then you a power lifter-friendly area with squat racks, Smith machines, benches, and a big range of barbells and plates. There’s also a smaller area featuring mats, kettlebells, TRX, step boxes, and pull-up bars.
For someone like myself – who’s interested in keeping fit using both cardio and weight training – the equipment on offer is more than ample.
Oddly, despite being a member, I can’t talk for the changing rooms as I’ve not actually used them. Unlike the more central gyms, I tend to just get out of the car, workout, then get back in the car to go home. However the general cleanliness of the gym (and other areas) is impeccable. Generally I can’t fault it. There’s always a cleaner milling around, and there’s plenty of signs of regular cleaning.
As fitness class offerings go, Swansea University gym is fantastic. I attend the Titan Conditioning sessions twice a week, while the centre also offers classes such as Les Mills BodyPump, Les Mills Grit, Spin, Zumba and Yoga. All included in the price of a membership.
Aside from saying hello on the way in, I rarely speak with the staff. However, they all seem nice enough and have a good rapport with some users. I don’t usually see them wandering the gym, but there is always one at the little reception area at the entrance to both the centre and the gym itself. I have seen them help some older gym users get to grips with the machines, so if you aren’t comfortable using a gym this is a good aspect.
You will find a big mix of gym users. I tend to go quite early in the mornings and it’s a mix of older folk (around 60 to 80 years old) and, naturally, younger guys and gals, mostly students at the uni. The older users all seem to chat quite a bit, while the younger seem to keep to themselves. Overall, a pleasant atmosphere.
One thing I am a big fan of is the digital combination lockers, as you don’t need to remember a pound or worry about losing keys. You just enter a combination of your choice, confirm it, then it’s locked. Enter it again to unlock it. Simple.
It’s worth nothing that there’s also ample Pay and Display parking too. It works out at £1.50 for two hours (more than enough time to use the gym). Remember to get the ticket stamped and you can claim a pound of this back.
I can’t really fault the Swansea University gym. It’s a decent size, always clean, has a good selection of equipment and is rarely too busy. And cool lockers! For the price, it’s excellent for students and the general public alike.
Need more info on Swansea University gym? Check our their website!
Check out more reviews of gyms in Swansea – only on Fitness Swansea!
Whatever time of year, there’s nothing better than setting your sights on a fitness goal such as completing a few Welsh half marathons next year.
Although not as insane as a full marathon, half marathons are considerably more of an achievement than a 10K. In fact, they are an excellent middle-ground for runners of all abilities.
So, we at Fitness Swansea are highlighting five awesome Welsh half marathons to consider in 2018.
1. Swansea Half Marathon
Let’s start with one very close to home – it’s the Swansea Half Marathon!
Compared to Cardiff (below) it’s much newer – established in 2014 – although it has since been voted the UK’s best half marathon (in 2017), with more than 6,000 runners taking part this year.
Like many in Wales, it’s another very picturesque half marathon. It starts in the city centre before heading down towards Mumbles, taking in the panoramic sights of Swansea Bay.
This is a summer race, with the 2018 Swansea Half Marathon taking place on Sunday, 24 June. Great weather not guaranteed!
2. Cardiff Half Marathon
Moving on to the capital city, the Cardiff Half Marathon was established in 2003 and since then has grown to become one of the largest half marathons in the whole of the UK.
A predominantly flat course, it’s great for first-time half marathon runners and elite runners alike. Another plus is it’s a very scenic route, taking in some historical landmarks such as Cardiff Castle, the Cardiff Bay waterfront, and Bute Park.
The Cardiff Half Marathon takes place quite late in the year, and 2018’s event is set for Sunday, 7 October 2018.
3. The Wales Half Marathon
Taking place in beautiful Tenby on Sunday, 15 July, the 2018 Wales Marathon – incorporating the Wales Half Marathon – is another awesome event and one of the best Welsh half marathons around.
The half-marathon runners will set off from Pembroke Castle at midday, and run the 13.1 mile closed-road route, ending in Tudor Square in Tenby. It’s quite a hilly course compared to offerings in city routes such as Cardiff and Swansea, but nothing like a good challenge!
4. Coastal Trail Series (Pembrokeshire)
The Coastal Trail Series incorporates a few different running events, all taking place on Saturday, 28 April in 2018. These include a 10K, a marathon, an ultra marathon, and – what we care about today – the 15.1 mile half marathon.
With multiple terrains (including grass, trail and beach), it’s a beautiful and challenging route. You’ll run by the cliffs and beaches of Britain’s only coastal National Park at Little Haven – a great view! As Welsh half marathons go, this is a must-try.
5. The Admiral City of Newport Half Marathon
Heading east, we arrive in Newport for the final half marathon on our 2018 list. And it’s a good one to finish with, as The Admiral City of Newport Half Marathon is an event with great atmosphere, good entertainment and a new scenic route that takes in lots of familiar sights.
In 2018, the 13.1 mile run will take place on Sunday, 4 March at 9am. Get training!
| Reviewed by James Lilley |
Since opening in 2006, The Ware-House, Swansea has grown to be one of the most popular gyms in the city centre. It doesn’t have the polish of the big brand gyms, but it certainly has a soul!
The gym itself has everything you need for your fitness journey. There’s a huge range of classes (see below) but your membership also gives you full access to the gym, which houses a decent free weights, TRX and kettlebell area, a boxing gym with a ring, and the main hall downstairs.
The changing rooms have recently been refitted, although I find they are a tad on the small side. While there is no dedicated gym parking – and the roads around the gym can get pretty busy – you’ll find plenty of parking available if you are willing to pay in the NCP opposite or in the public car park just down the road.
As you can see from the timetable below, the range of classes throughout the day really sets the gym alight. No class is the same, and if you’ve been to a Bootcamp you will know what I mean.
Some days you are in the main hall downstairs doing circuits, others you are across the city, running up Kilvey Hill, down the beach, and generally mixing it up to add an edge other gyms don’t often offer.
As well as the regular timetable, the gym is home to an amateur boxing club which runs on a Monday, Wednesday and Friday. If you have ever wanted to fight, there are the White Collar Boxing events to consider too.
Full marks again, as the gym is extremely busy on social media, promoting events, advertising class timetable tweaks, shouting out members, and posting class pics / training videos. Honestly, I haven’t seen a better online presence from a gym and its trainers than the Ware-House.
When it comes to atmosphere, The Ware-House and its sister gym blow the competition out of the water in this department.
Gyms are the new social hub and The Ware-House is a shining example of this. The trainers are friendly, welcoming and make a real effort to get to know everyone personally. If you are without a partner for a class you don’t have far to look for someone willing to help out. The White Collar events have legendary nights out, Christmas parties, ski trips, fundraisers and more. The gym does it all!
The price ranges to include classes, and you can purchase individual sessions on a credit system. I’d say the normal cost is above average. But if you attended the gym regularly and do the classes, you will get more than value for money.
As an open gym it probably falls short compared to the facilities you would get at the big brand gyms, but the personal experience is second-to-none and full of personal trainers who are more than happy to help and guide you. For this, you can’t go wrong.
The Ware-House, Swansea is a gym with soul! I wouldn’t recommend this gym if you want to keep to yourself, as this is a family atmosphere and the classes are bouncing.
From pumping music to trainers/members shouting and clapping, The Warehouse has heart. Granted, it hasn’t got the smooth edges of the cut-and-paste big brand gyms, but that’s a good thing in my opinion.
This gym was built for people to have a good time when training. That’s why I highly recommend checking this place out if you are looking for somewhere to start, or are bored of the usual gym grind!
Be sure to check out more Fitness Swansea gym reviews here.
With Christmas just around the corner, we’ve decided to round up some of 2017’s hottest health and fitness gifts.
So if you’re looking for something that’ll actually be appreciated by your gym/running/fitness-crazy loved one with this Christmas (or even yourself…), you’ve come to the right place!
Here are five of our favourites, spanning a few different price categories:
This is undoubtedly one of our favourite fitness gifts of 2017! Designed by scientist and military fitness expert Sergeant Volkin, this is a High Intensity Interval Training game which gives you a different workout every time.
Workouts last for between four and twenty minutes, and are bodyweight only, with video instructions. Just shuffle the cards and quickly create a workout that you can do alone or with friends and family (although it’s probably best not to ask granny to join in on Christmas Day…).
Natural Hero Cool Peppermint Muscle Spritz (Perfect Stocking Filler)
Forget Deep Freeze – this cooling peppermint muscle spray is a gym bag essential!
The bottle contains 100ml of muscle cooling spray, made of 99% natural ingredients. It’s formulated with no parabens, no SLS, no petrochemicals, and is tested on humans instead of animals.
But as well as being ethical, it works! It takes a little time to get going, but when it does it helps to ease tension both pre and post exercise, delivering a pleasant cooling sensation that then warms the muscle. A great stocking filler.
Wireless headphones are an essential piece of kit these days, as they allow you to pair with a phone or smartwatch via Bluetooth – meaning no tangles, or wires to get caught on tree branches as you run…
You could spend hundreds on a set of wireless headphones, but why bother when you can get this excellent pair from TaoTronics, which come in a range of colours.
For under £20 you’re getting a snug and comfortable pair, that don’t slip out when running or lifting. They are also noise-cancelling, which is perfect for a loud gym. Built-in magnets allow you to wear the headphones around your neck like a necklace when not in use, which is a handy feature.
There are cheaper workout journals out there – heck, you could use a scrap of paper in all honesty. However, this journal is a classier way for your loved one to record their workouts, chart progress, and keep reaching their goals.
With 194 pages and a convenient cover band, the journal includes daily pages for recording cardio activity, strength training, flexibility, classes, and vitamins/supplements taken. Going to the gym every day? There’s about three months worth of room in here, although those who work out less often will see it last up to a year.
Don’t know what to buy? Don’t know what they like? This is a great box of protein treats for any fitness lover, and one that caters to all tastes.
For an affordable price, the box contains a 700ml LA Muscle Protein Shaker, a trio of protein bars and three MyProtein Impact Whey Protein satchets, stuffed inside a quality gift box. What’s more, free gift wrapping is available – meaning no need to fuss around with scissors, tape and paper. Sorted.
Brand new for 2017, The Fitness Mindset by the popular online fitness trainer Brian Keane is proving one of the most popular fitness books of the year – so it’s no surprise it’s also likely to be one of the most popular fitness gifts this Christmas.
The book covers so much, although it helps readers train both body and mind toward the goal of getting in the best physical shape of their life. Includes sections on how to eat to increase energy, lose fat and build lean muscle, as well as teaching us how to combine tension-style workouts and Hiit to build a fit, hard body. Sounds pretty good to us!
Samsung Gear Fit Pro 2 (Premium Gift!)
As fitness gifts go, the Samsung Gear Fit Pro 2 is certainly a premium present. Save this one for a very special someone…
However it’s one hell of a fitness watch. In addition to the functions you’d expect (heart-rate monitor, step counter, exercise tracking, and the rest), you get Spotify offline playback and 100% waterproof build for swim tracking.
Make sure to check out our full review of the Samsung Gear Fit Pro 2 for all the details.
FitNation Premium Resistance Bands (Perfect for Secret Santa)
Resistance bands are hugely popular at the moment, and a great alternative to weights as well as an excellent injury rehabilitation tool!
At under a fiver, these resistance bands make excellent Secret Santa fitness gifts (providing the recipient likes fitness…).
The set contains a trio of premium grade bands (measuring 30cm x 5cm each), with light, medium and heavy resistance. It also comes with a free pocket-sized carry bag. Bargain!
While a personal massage can be the ultimate remedy for your aches and pains, they can set you back many pounds – especially if you have a series of them.
So this complete fitness self-massage set is a godsend, especially for the budget price. Included in the set is a foam roller, a massage stick, a lacrosse ball and a spikey ball, for working every nook and cranny you can think off. It also comes with a handy carry case.
For the affordable price, the quality of this set is very good, and easily rivals some of the more expensive kits around.
Finally we come to this neat little running pouch. It’s nothing fancy, but at under a tenner this simple pouch is super convenient for runners – allowing you to hold the essentials, such as keys, money, smartphone and snacks.
The adjustable neoprene pouch is light, comfortable and water resistance, and features reflective stripes for low-light running. It’s the gift that keeps on giving!
| Reviewed By Joe Tobin |
As a 31-year-old who keeps relatively fit, I have used several different gyms around Swansea over the past fifteen years.
I would describe myself as having a moderate interest in health and fitness, with my focus generally on cardio machines while I train for 10Ks and half marathons. For the past five years I have been a member of The Gym, Swansea at the top of Princess Way in the city centre.
The single-floor gym has a large, open-plan layout. The decor is generally no-frills although a recent refurbishment saw a vibrant lick of paint added to the walls. I always feel entry to the gym floor is a bit like being in a sci-fi movie, as an 8-digit code grants access to an ‘entry pod’.
All the equipment you would expect from a modern gym can be found, such as treadmills which overlook Princess Way. An amusing aspect of this is watching pedestrians below looking up in fascination at the gym above. I also like the the ‘Myride’ bikes, which play video footage on screen as if to imitate a ride around various locations such as woodland, the coast, and even Seattle!
Of course, there are also rowing machines, a variety of weights equipment, and a free weights area which is not my area of expertise but always seems popular. Importantly there is more than sufficient quantity of equipment that means you will rarely be kept waiting, even during busy periods.
While The Gym, Swansea is budget in price, this is certainly not reflected in the facilities on offer. TV screens dotted around play music videos. There are no news or sports channels showing but I don’t mind this at all, as I like to visit the gym to ‘escape’ for an hour or so!
A handy feature on the gym’s website are videos demonstrating how to use the equipment. This is useful for beginners and those, like myself, who perhaps aren’t 100% confident using certain machines.
Staff are available most of the time, and I’m sure they are happy to help, although I’ve had limited interaction with them myself. Note that they also double up as personal trainers who are available to hire.
There is a relaxed, friendly atmosphere here, and the clientele is a mixture of all ages and abilities. In some gyms, I’ve sensed a little cliquishness among members using the weights equipment, but I have never felt that to be the case here.
Because the gym is open 24 hours, on several occasions I have visited after 10pm. Despite the late time, everything still feels safe. The entry system helps the gym feel secure and the relaxed atmosphere is maintained. People simply get on with their own thing. I have also found that, while it is not that busy late at night, there are still enough people around that the place doesn’t feel too eerie!
The changing rooms and showers are clean, with more than enough lockers available. However, it is with the lockers that we find one of the more unusual aspects of the gym. Instead of popping in a £1 coin to operate the locker, you must use your own padlock. If you don’t already happen to own one, you can buy one from a vending machine for £5.
This might irritate some people, but then I would argue that you are already getting excellent value for money with the membership itself. I also find that the locks themselves feel a little temperamental, as the catch sometimes doesn’t move properly when turning it.
It’s a budget gym with a price of £13.99 a month to new members (plus the £20 ‘joining fee’). There’s no contract to tie you down either – you can stop your membership at any time. For this, The Gym is great value for money!
Locks and lockers aside, my five years as a member of The Gym, Swansea has been a largely positive experience. Until other gyms lower their prices and offer the same membership flexibility, I have no reason to consider changing. For the bargain price, you really can’t go wrong.
Check out the website for The Gym, Swansea for more details on pricing, times and equipment.
And you can check out more Fitness Swansea gym reviews here.
| Reviewed by Rebecca Thomas |
As someone who is new to exercise (and yes, at 35 it’s about time I started), I decided to try the weekly Zumba at the LC class in my efforts to keep fit.
My mum, who is 59, joined me for the class. Considering she’s done about one hour of exercise in the last six decades, it would be an experience for her too!
Don’t ask me why, but I was worried the instructor would be an uncompromising disciplinarian, similar to an old PE teacher in school. However, there was nothing to worry about as we met Mustafa.
What a fun guy – full of energy and wit, and clearly a professional. He was someone who made everyone feel genuinely comfortable with the class, whether you were an experienced dancer or (as most of us were) newcomers to the exercise.
Kitted in an old Primark t-shirt and not-particularly-glamourous leggings, we started with a warm-up dance, which is slower-paced version of pretty much what we’d do in the rest of the class.
The pace increased and before we knew it we were flying through the tracks. The music was an eclectic mix of high-paced, modern and fun Latin tracks that make you want to dance. Following Mustafa was easy, and we got the hang of it in no time.
The class is on for about an hour, although by the time you’ve had a little chat at the start and done some warm-down stretches at the end, you dance for about 45 minutes. But what a great workout, and one that really got your whole body moving. We were a sweaty mess by the end, but had enjoyed what seemed more like fun than exercise.
The class takes place inside the LC, Swansea, in Studio B. It’s a great space, and the studio overlooks the swimming pool. It seemed to be a proper dance studio as the walls were lined with mirrors and ballet rails. No complaints there. There are also ample changing rooms at the LC, although we didn’t use these, so I can’t comment on them.
I’m not a member of the gym, so I pay £5.95 per Zumba session. For me, this proves pretty good value for the workout you get. It’s either that or a slice of cake and a latte, and I know which is better for me! One thing that would be nice is if they would consider a class-only membership or some sort of discount scheme for people who want to use the Zumba class every week, but aren’t interested in the gym itself.
For someone who hates the thought of exercise, I was impressed with how easy it was to settle into this Zumba at the LC class. The instruction was great, and we will 100% return (in fact, since our first class we have done so twice)!
The class reviewed takes place on a Thursday evening at 7.25pm.
You can find out more info about these classes on the LC website.
For more class reviews, check out our Class Review page.
Welcome to Fitness Swansea!
We’re new, having launched in November 2017 – however we have some big ideas!
Whether you’re a bodybuilder, triathlete, power-lifter, gym rat, casual runner, or just someone in Swansea interested in getting a littler fitter, you’ve come to the right place.
At Fitness Swansea, our eventual aim is to become the hub of fitness news, gym reviews and information in the city.
We are not a gym, we are not an event, and we are not a government organisation. We’re simply an independent blog that loves talking about gyms and general fitness in Swansea!
We’ll keep adding to our blog with interesting articles about health and fitness (many from experts in their field). We’ll have honest gym reviews, fitness product reviews, and news on upcoming fitness events.
We also offer a directory of fitness classes, swimming pools, and gyms in South Wales (near Swansea). Again this will soon be much bigger than it is, but we’ve got to start somewhere!
If you’re a fitness or nutrition expert and fancy giving an article a go, get in touch. Same goes if you’re a regular gym goer and want to rate and review your gym, or favourite fitness class.
| Reviewed By Chris Carra |
First off, let’s get something straight – it’s called the LC, not the LC2! The ‘2’ in the logo is actually a wave. As far as I know, it’s officially known as the LC.
Now that’s out of the way, I can start my review.
And, to me, the LC is perhaps the best gym in Swansea. While I’m not a member there, it’s my go-to gym if I need to work-out while in the city centre.
There’s plenty going for it – it’s central, it’s modern, it’s well-equipped, it’s clean and it actually has one of the best views a gym in Swansea can offer (overlooking the Waterfront Museum and green spaces from the second floor).
Note that this is a review of the LC Gym, not the classes, pool, or facility as a whole.
The actual gym is set inside the main LC complex, which also offers other fitness activities such as the pool, a spa, and a climbing wall, as well as a cafe and some sort of children’s play area.
This gym is set over two floors. The lower floor is primarily cardio equipment, with everything from treadmills and cross trainers, to those cool StairMaster machines (not sure if that’s the exact brand the LC use). I believe there are around 180 in total over the two floors, which is pretty generous.
A small free-weights section and resistance area exists on the lower floor, but it’s up the oddly-long spiral staircase to the second floor where the majority of free-weights and resistance machines sit.
Bench press (flat, incline and decline), squat racks, utility benches and Smith machines all feature, as do a pretty generous selection of plates and dumbbells. You’ll find some extras such as kettlebells, powerbags and medicine balls, but not a huge range in this department.
I rarely see them on the second floor, but a few were milling around the entrance to the gym. All seemed approachable and friendly, although I don’t tend to actually speak to anyone (call me antisocial…).
It’s quite a calm gym in general. The general clientele seems a big mix of age groups and abilities. Overall it’s quite quiet, which is good. Sure, you’ll get a few nutters dropping weights and psyching themselves up now and again, but everyone seems to get on with it in relative silence. The gym is also peppered with TVs showing various shows including SkySports, should you wish to catch a match while working out!
Having only been in the men’s changing rooms I can say that the LC offers a very clean experience. One of the cleanest changing experiences I’ve had at a gym in Swansea (because there are some pretty grim ones!). There’s rarely any water on the floor, the general smell isn’t unpleasant, and there are plenty of lockers.
The shower area is clean and the showers function quite well. However I’m not a fan of the automatic on/off feature. For me, this feature tends to be a little temperamental (not so great when you have soap in your eyes…). Otherwise no complaints in this department.
I’m happy to recommend the LC gym in Swansea. It’s definitely one of the best in the city, although suited more towards the general gym-goer and fitness enthusiast, instead of serious bodybuilders or power-lifters. It’s spacious, clean and overall decent value for money (a single session is £5.95).
Check the LC website for more details on times, prices and equipment.
And you can check out more Fitness Swansea gym reviews here.
These days, Christmas tends to be a booze-and-pie-fueled holiday, which seems to span at least a six week period. While the winter holiday is certainly something to look forward to, it also brings with it plenty of reasons to let your fitness goals fall apart.
However, it’s not necessary to let all your hard work over the year slip just because there is a mountain of mince pies within reach.
Here are a few quick tips to keep you in with a fighting chance at keeping fit this Christmas.
You’ll thank us come January!
Take Advantage of Snow!
Admittedly in Swansea we aren’t blessed with American-style mounds of snow, but if it does happen, there’s loads you can do in the snow to keep fit and have fun. Sledding down a hill (and climbing back up) is excellent cardio, while a snowball fight is the perfect reason to run around outside, while taking out some festive aggression. Fingers crossed for some white stuff this year…
Stick to Your Routine
Just because it’s Christmas, it doesn’t mean you need to take a month-long break from your usual fitness routine. Sure, things get busier, and you probably won’t be heading to the gym on Christmas Day, but schedule in time for the gym, a run, or for a regular fitness class. A brisk walk is also ideal to soak up some daylight, although make sure to wrap up warm.
Eat at Home
‘Tis the season of parties, but do your best to eat at home, before you head out. That way you can enjoy a balanced, nutritious meal, and feel less urge to overindulge at a buffet or restaurant. It’ll also be more wallet-friendly!
Indulge in Sprouts
Not everyone loves a brussel sprout. But these little green nuggets – a festive dinner staple – are awesome. Packed full of minerals and immune system-boosting vitamin C, there’s no better time to enjoy them, especially while they are fresh and in-season. Check out this article to read more on the benefits of sprouts.
Try a Fitness Advent Calendar
Instead (or at least in addition to…) your usual chocolate one, a fitness advent calendar is a great way to keep moving every day in December – whether you are a regular fitness enthusiast or a complete beginner. You gradually build up from a little exercise to a lot, meaning by Christmas Day, you have thoroughly deserved your dinner! Check out our article on fitness advent calendars and how to construct one yourself.
Get a Good Night’s Sleep
Over the winter party season, set aside at least two night’s a week to go to bed at a normal time (i.e. before midnight). It’ll keep you looking and feeling fresher than the guy who partied every night that week, energetic enough to do some exercise, plus it will keep your immune system in good shape.
Watch What You Drink
You don’t have to avoid Swansea’s Wind Street (although perhaps it’s a good idea anyway…), but the most obvious advice to keep fit this Christmas is to drink in moderation. Easier said than done sometimes, but give yourself a limit then stick to it. Just remind yourself that there are around 180 calories in a pint of beer, and up to 300 in a glass of wine.
Get Your Skates On!
Many towns and cities across Wales usually set up outdoor ice-rinks for public use over the winter (usually for a small price) – Swansea in particular, with the Winter Wonderland (in front of the LC). Whether you’re a seasoned ice-skating veteran, or have never tried it, it’s a surprisingly great way to get your heart rate up and have fun. Just watch those falls, and try not to break a leg…
The festive season is a great time to enjoy eating and drink your favourite foods, and you shouldn’t stop yourself. Just limit yourself to more sensible portions and you’ll find you’ll be able to keep fit this Christmas with greater ease.