Brrrrilliant ways to keep fit

Adelina Campos

STUCK indoors, lounging in front of the TV with chocolates and DVD box sets? Think that exercise can be put on hold now that the weather has turned freezing?

Think again, says celebrity fitness guru Karl Henry, who is urging us to keep up our exercise routines and be in top shape for the Christmas season.

The Operation Transformation star told the Herald there was "no excuse to spend this week sitting at home, watching TV, eating marshmallows and drinking hot chocolate".

"We've had 45 one-on-one sessions cancelled at the start of the week because of the weather but that's no excuse for getting out of shape," he said.

Karl, who has monitored contestants' fitness levels since the RTE show started, suggested a number of everyday activities that could replace a lengthy trip to the gym or a run in the snow.

"There are plenty of things people can still do in this weather," Karl said. "Clear the pavement outside your home or your business for example, I spent about an hour doing it this morning and I was sweating after that.

"Path-clearing would burn about 400 to 500 calories in an hour and get your heart pumping so you'll get as much as a workout as if you were on a cross-trainer. It's a good cardio-vascular exercise but it also works the legs and arms and you're providing safety for your neighbours.

"So get your shovel out, get digging, get sweeping."

While he is usually an advocate of outdoor exercise, the dedicated trainer recommended that couch-potatoes include their TV in fitness routines.

"You can still exercise, run up and down the stairs 10 times to get your lungs working and also use fitness DVDs," he told the Herald.

"In terms of workout games, EA Sport Active on the WiiFit is the best one, and of course, the Operation Transformation website is up and running.

"All you need for the exercises on are bottles of water, cans of beans, things that people can get anywhere.

"So go on the internet, watch fitness DVDs or use your console to get training, any kind of movement is better than none."