Friday, 20 December 2013

Staying active over Christmas

Last Christmas I set myself the challenge of running everyday over the Christmas holiday and I absolutely loved it!

Most of my friends and family thought I was completely bonkers,  even more than normal.  They asked whether I was even planning to go out on Christmas Day or even New Year's Day.  My answer confirmed that was the plan.

Last year I did 11 runs, starting on 21 December with Christmas Run no. 1 and found it to be very beneficial.  In that post I explained a little more about why I was doing it. If nothing else it was a way of burning those extra calories which are so easy to consume!  I was reminded of this when I spotted Sustrans recently highlighting a YouGov survey which found 54% of people were planning to take some exercise on Christmas Day or Boxing Day (click here for the article).  

That figure of 54% people taking some exercise is reassuring as apparently we can easily consume 8,000 calories on Christmas Day alone.  That is an incredibly amount, roughly four times what an adult should be eating or drinking in a day!  Talk about being glutinous.  For myself I found running each day to bring other benefits which included dealing with stress which had been building up at work.  It is also a lovely way of finishing off the year, a way of reflecting on the previous 12 months and remembering some of the many ways in which I felt truly blessed (running itself is a wonderful blessing on its own!). It is also a nice way of starting the new year ahead.

This year it will probably be slightly different for me.  Yes I plan to stay active for all the obvious reasons but this year I am going to cycle more (I have an endurance event in six months time).  I'll probably mix running and cycling for practical reasons.

I can only stress how good it is to do something everyday over the holiday period.  I think the only reason to stop me would be illness for something totally beyond my control.  It's important for physical and mental health reasons, plus it's almost symbolic - who I am, what I do, how I'm starting and finishing a year.

How about you?


  1. Hi Doug,
    I usually go out for a moderate run on Xmas morning, nothing too strenuous.
    Wishing you a very happy Christmas and a splendid year ahead.

  2. Thanks H. Here's wishing you and yours a lovely time over Christmas and for the year ahead.