5 random thoughts on training during the holidays

I’ve written only a handful of posts in December, so here is a smorgasbord of random thoughts for you on this Christmas Eve morning.

1. Doing lunges at a rest stop is weird, but not impossible

The trip from Maine to Pennsylvania begins with busy highways, three lanes of traffic, and the claustrophobic feel of the busy New England life. Gradually, as Massachusetts and Connecticut give way to New York, the exits get further apart, the highways merge to two lanes, and eventually, we’re making the final two hour drive on Interstate 80 to get to State College.

A Bonnie Raitt squat is a bodyweight squat. The rest of these exercises can be found on my  YouTube Channel .

A Bonnie Raitt squat is a bodyweight squat. The rest of these exercises can be found on my YouTube Channel.

And I’m going batshit crazy because I’ve been in the car for too long. Sheila does all of the driving since she gets car sick, so I vacillate between singing Barry Manilow songs and trying not to puke in stop and go traffic.

It’s delightful.

By the time we hit a rest stop, we park far away and I lunge to the bathroom, jog back and forth a few times, and do wide stance t-spine mobilizations in front of vending machines. 

Strangers make a wide arc to go around me. “I don’t know what you’ve got,” they’re thinking. “But I hope I don’t catch it.” 

2. I travel with my grid stick

My friend John always told me to travel with a mag flashlight, as it could be used to break a window should my car get submerged, or take out a stranger at the knees, but in a pinch, a good whack with my grid stick would at least stun someone.

Both of us like to be prepared, ok?

But that’s not why I travel with it. I use my grid stick to get the blood flowing when we get to the hotel or our final destination. I can use it in the car, and it feels good to aggressively work on some of those knots when I just. can’t. Listen. To. NPR. For. one. More . minute. 

3. Something is better than nothing

Yesterday I popped into the gym with my little brother for a quick workout. I was tired, hadn’t slept well in two days, and the last thing I wanted to do was train. But we both went anyway, and I got in a solid 45 minutes of work. I only did six exercises after a brief warm up, but it got my blood flowing and improved my mood. Sometimes I struggle to train if I’m not following a specific program, so it’s good for me to remember that doing something is better than nothing.

It was also great to see my brother isn’t doing any of the program I wrote for him, so it was a good reminder that I’m not necessarily a “coach” but just someone who makes suggestions to family members when they ask and then they largely ignore them.

Cheers :-)

4. Training during the holidays helps to promote kindness

You know that I believe in kindness as a core value for everyone. Well, we’re all less likely to get in screaming matches over politics or the last piece of monkey bread Christmas morning if we’ve done a little workout to get those endorphins flowing. Or to work out aggression. Either or.

And when I say workout, I mean you can go outside and take a walk.

5. You don’t need a gym to train

Sure I practice deadlifting my dog into the car, up the stairs, and onto the couch, but even if you didn’t have to lift your 55 pound hound, you can still get a good bodyweight circuit in. Follow the circuit on the picture to get your heart rate up, your endorphins going, and make people at rest stops stare at you sideways.  


Wishing you the happiest of holiday seasons.