Brooke Burke, 51, shares her favorite tips to staying in shape during the holidays
Brooke Burke believes you don’t have to wait until the New Year to kick off your resolutions.
The former “Dancing with the Stars” host has been encouraging her followers to get a jump-start on their fitness goals by sharing some of her go-to moves for looking – and feeling – good.
In 2017, the mom of four developed “Brooke Burke Body,” an app that features hundreds of “stackable” workout programs ranging from five to 30 minutes that can be done anywhere without equipment. Her goal, she said, was to make exercise more accessible to busy moms struggling to carve out time for themselves.
“I think one of the most common mistakes is people don’t know where to begin,” the 51-year-old told Fox News Digital. “They lose their sense of self, their self-confidence. They don’t know how to create change. So then they do nothing, which would be the biggest mistake… If you’re not feeling certain about how to start changing your body, just do something. Take a walk, start small… Doing something is better than nothing. It’s the most common conversation that I have with women.”
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Burke acknowledged that when it comes to starting a new workout regimen, there can be insecurity and a lack of energy. However, she encouraged others to experiment with different workouts to find the best one that gives them joy and confidence.
“We know that after we have a workout, we have more energy than we started with,” she explained. “And we know that a sense of accomplishment encourages us to get up and do it again tomorrow. There’s just a lot of self-talk, this negative dialogue inside that’s telling us, ‘I don’t know if I’m strong enough. I don’t like it. I don’t feel like it.’ So I have to push through that. Motivation is a big part of it, and it’s hard for a lot of people, myself included. Especially as a woman with hormones, fatigue, life, kids, work – all of those things are real reasons.”
“There’s always going to be an excuse not to work out,” she continued. “So I like to encourage people to commit to a program. Maybe it’s a 28-day program. You can decide, ‘This month… I’m going to give myself 15 minutes a day to work out’ and keep that promise… At the end of completing a program, you’ll feel so good that you’ll want to do it again.”
The star insisted that it is possible to kick off new health goals during the holiday season, a time when many are enjoying comfort foods and drinks during parties and get-togethers. Burke said she likes creating daily challenges for herself to give her a sense of accomplishment, which will encourage her to keep going. She also recommended creating a 30-day program where you stay committed to breaking a sweat for 30 days straight. It is a way to create a healthier habit, and it can be done around one’s schedule.
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“During the holidays, [have] a little more water than booze,” she chuckled. “Never go to a holiday party hungry. That’s when you start making bad choices. I think you need to sweat a little bit more. You can up your cardio and find things that are doable and easy to follow… I love committing to 15 minutes a day and getting creative. I think fitness should be fun and I like to mix it up so that we can stay engaged… The digital world of fitness is amazing. Whether it’s my app or something else, like YouTube – there are practically free programs out there… You gotta make time… Find things that you enjoy. Otherwise, you will get bored… You can hop on a Zoom class. If you want to turn your camera off, that’s OK. If you have it on, someone is there to help make corrections. Now is a really good time to start. Find a partner to work out with if you need motivation and get some free content to start.”
Burke said one workout routine she’s been loving lately is high-intensity interval training (HIIT). It’s a short, intense exercise, such as burpees, jumping jacks and mountain climbers, that helps burn calories quickly.
“I like it because you used to go to a cardio class that was 45 minutes and the inner dialogue was like, ‘Oh my gosh, how much longer? I’m not going to make it through this class.’ Now, we can do bursts and power pushes to spike that heart rate up. We also get an amazing after burn. I like to spike the heart rate, recover and [do it all over]. There’s a lot of recovery because otherwise, we’re dreading it before we begin. And I think fitness should be a challenge. It should be uncomfortable, but I think it should also be doable. Otherwise, you are not going to come back and do it again.”
“I also do a lot of yoga, a lot of stretching and a lot of Pilates-inspired moves,” she said. “The moments where you spike your heart rate up and break a sweat, those are the moments that change your body. But it has to be fun. And then I chill out probably for three minutes and do it again. And then I do a stretch and catch my breath and do it again… I also like compound moves where I’m using my core. I’m getting my ab workout while I’m working my lower body and maybe using some light arm weights. If you don’t have weights, use water bottles. If you don’t have a yoga mat, lay a towel out.”
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Burke also advised incorporating healthier ingredients into our favorite holiday dishes. Most recently, she launched Longevity, a superfood blend she said can be added to a recipe.
“I don’t like to go hungry,” she said. “I intermittently fast, but I also really believe in fueling the brain and creating energy by what I put into my body nutritionally. I like high-protein snacks. One of my favorite snacks right now is to take dates, take the pit out, cut it in half, put a spoonful of almond butter and then sprinkle [some] cacao powder on top. I put it in the freezer and the kids grab those. I feel like if we have healthy, mindful snacks on hand, then we don’t make bad choices.”
“It’s not too late or too early to start your goals,” she advised. “All you need is a playlist and a commitment.”