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How to Stick to a Holiday Workout Routine

Woman doing yoga in front of a Christmas tree.
DMITRII SIMAKOV/Shutterstock.com

Come the end of the year and the holiday season, all we’re looking forward to is lounging in our sweats, cozying up under a blanket, and binging our favorite Netflix shows. And while there’s absolutely nothing wrong with that, here’s how to keep moving and stick to a holiday workout routine even when your motivation is down.

Create a Schedule

Woman writing her workout schedule in a planner.
Prostock-studio/Shutterstock.com

If you’re struggling with keeping a consistent workout schedule, the best thing you can do is put it on your calendar. Right next to your work meetings, kids’ activities, holiday dinners, and other daily errands. Seeing it in your calendar can help you make it as important as everything else on your to-do list so you can prioritize your health and self-care whenever you can.

If the only time you can fit in a workout is in the morning, make it a priority to get up earlier, sweat it out, and continue with your day. On the other hand, if your mornings are busy and hectic, book an evening group class, use your lunch break, or stretch it out in front of your TV.

Of course, life happens and things change, and no one says you have to attend every single yoga class or go for every 5-mile run. But having it in your schedule and seeing it every day creates a sort of accountability so you can find a way to make it work.

Fitness journal

Plan and track your every workout.

Make Your Workouts Enjoyable

Woman exercising and smiling.
Lyubov Levitskaya/Shutterstock.com

Working out is always going to be easier if you’re only doing what you absolutely enjoy. No one is motivated 24/7 and with the weather getting colder and the days becoming shorter, it’s completely normal to want to snooze your alarm and just cancel the day altogether.

And some days, that’s exactly what you should do for your mental health, but when that turns into a habit, you know it’s just the convenience of it that’s so appealing. Sometimes we really do need to push ourselves to get up, put on some activewear, and sweat it out.

And since you’ve already pushed yourself to do that, the last thing you’re going to want to do is to go for a run or hop on your Peloton if you don’t enjoy it. Instead, listen to your body and move in the way you like. That way, you’re more likely to keep a consistent schedule week after week, even when the temperatures drop below zero.

Workout sets

Everything you need for a killer workout.

Get a Workout Buddy

Two women working out together in a park.
Karla Tafra

Sometimes all we really need is a partner to motivate us and keep us accountable. If you’re reading this and raising your hand, probably the best thing you can do to keep a holiday workout routine is to find someone to do it with you. That way, you’re more likely to show up for your workouts, give it your best, and even get into a fun, competitive spirit so you push yourself even harder.

This could also be a great opportunity to see a friend or family member you rarely get a chance to and spend some quality time together. And hey, there’s always the post-workout brunch to look forward to!

Boxing bag

Punch it out with a friend or alone.

Don’t Stress About it

Woman enjoying a cup of tea in front of the fire during Christmas.
Artshake Media/Shutterstock.com

Unless you’re training for a specific race or a competition, don’t stress about missing a workout or two. Holidays are a hectic and often pretty stressful time of the year, making it hard to stick to your routine, even when you think you’ve planned it out perfectly. The best thing you can do about it is not stress. One missed workout doesn’t mean your whole week is ruined, there’s always the next day.

The added anxiety about when and how you’re going to compensate for the missed workout and whether or not it’s going to mess up your entire exercise game plan will only make it more stressful in the long run. Accept that this is the time of the year when plans change, weather disruptions cause traffic delays, and seasonal colds and the flu are on the rise, making it possible for some exercise classes to even be canceled. Let it go. You’ll be doing yourself a favor.

Olly Supplements

Help lower your stress levels.


Sticking to your fitness routine during the holidays can be stressful, so it’s up to you to find the time to work out and prioritize it as much as you comfortably can. And don’t stress about it if you don’t have the perfect attendance score; holidays come only one time during the year. Enjoy them!

Karla Tafra Karla Tafra
Karla is a certified yoga teacher, nutritionist, content creator and an overall wellness coach with over 10 years of international experience in teaching, writing, coaching, and helping others transform their lives. From Croatia to Spain and now, the US, she calls Seattle her new home where she lives and works with her husband. Read Full Bio »
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