New year, new us. I don’t mean to be cliché, but is there really any better time for working on yourself than when Jan. 1 rolls around—whether you’re focused on your physical health or your mental health? It sure seems like the perfect time, but there will also be days when you’re just not quite feeling it. The holidays are over, the days are shorter and, let’s face it, there’s not really a ton to look forward to until spring sprouts.
But, whatever your mood is this time of year, there’s still an activity you can do that’s worthwhile—and will give you a boost!
Here’s how to choose the right one.
Feeling Anxious // Yoga
A regular yoga practice can help to ease anxiety by increasing body awareness, reducing muscle tension, relieving stress and sharpening attention + concentration.
01 | RAGDOLL
Ragdoll pose is great for relaxation and to release tension. Stand tall + reach your arms up, then allow them to fall gently toward the floor as you bend down.
02 | CHILD'S POSE
This calming and restorative pose is a common beginner’s position. Starting from your knees, sit back on your heels then walk your arms forward, bringing your torso down until you can rest your forehead on the floor.
03 | SAVASANA
Relax one body part at a time, one muscle at a time + one thought at a time through a daily Savasana practice.
Feeling Bored // Climbing
When you feel like you’re in a rut with your workouts and just don’t feel motivated anymore, try something new and exciting! Rock climbing is a great way to introduce something different without it feeling like a workout.
01 | CLIMBING GYMS
Climbing gyms have been popping up everywhere as the sport becomes more mainstream + are a great option for those who prefer to be adventurous indoors. Check out Mountain Project for a full climbing gym directory.
02 | BOULDERING
Bouldering, great for developing power, is a type of rock climbing where the climber doesn’t use ropes or harnesses, generally done on a much smaller scale.
03 | SHAPE UP
Since climbing can use different muscles from traditional workouts, it’s important to keep up with strengthening those. Key areas to pay attention to include upper body, lower body, core, fingers and wrists.
Feeling Down // Running
There’s a reason people who are active runners describe something called a “runner’s high.” Studies show that aerobic exercises release mood-boosting endorphins.
01 | BEGINNERS
If you want to get into running but aren’t sure where to start, check out a couch-to-5K program to ease into it.
02 | CASUAL RUNNERS
Challenge yourself by switching up your running routine. Whether you’re changing your route or upping your distance, a new twist could give you a nice refresh.
03 | ENTHUSIASTS
Whether you’re into 10K’s or half marathons, consider signing up for a new race and decreasing your time.
Feeling Stressed // HIIT
When your head is full of thoughts, it can get overwhelming. High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) provides a break from that with short bursts of 100% focus followed by rest. Here’s a quick circuit.
01 | KETTLEBELL SWINGS
Do as many reps as possible in 45 seconds, followed by 15 seconds of rest.
02 | HIGH KNEES
Climb it out for 45 seconds, followed by 15 seconds of rest.
03 | PLANK
Hold your plank for 45 seconds, followed by 15 seconds of rest.
Repeat the circuit three times for a quick workout that touches on strength, cardio + core.
Feeling Lazy // At Home
Just not feeling like going anywhere? It happens to the best of us! No matter what you're looking for (or not looking for), you can find so many great quick + easy fitness videos and programs streaming and online. Some of my favorite workouts you can do from the comfort of your own living room come from Tone It Up, PopSugar and CrossFit Mayhem.