Every year I – like almost all fitness coaches – put my women through a 12 days of Xmas workout to mark the end of the year.  For my PT clients they all have a highly individual workout, and in my WOW classes I come up with a version aimed to suit all. This year I went all out and added festive names to the whole thing.

I think this is a great little workout to keep you entertained over the festive season if you want to keep moving.  For some, keeping a sense of routine is helpful, especially if a bit more indulgence is going on in the food and booze department.  Equally though, taking time to rest fully and be with family (no matter how limited that might be this year) is just as good for your health.  So no pressure!

If you fancy giving this is a go, let me explain how it works (and I’ll translate the exercises at the end of the post).

OPTION 1 (full version – approx 30 mins)

The full workout is an accumulator.  You effectively replace the words of the song “The 12 days of Christmas” with the exercises listed above.  And instead of your true love gifting you things, it’s me prescribing exercises.  Simple.

Round 1: On the first day of Christmas, Amber gave to me… 1 jingle bell jog.
Round 2: On the second day of Christmas, Amber gave to me… 2 twinkly tucks and 1 jingle bell jog.
Round 3: On the third day of Christmas, Amber gave to me… 3 pres(s)ent ups, 2 twinkly tucks and 1 jingle bell jog.
And so on, until in round 12 you do all 12 exercises, starting with 12 extending elves and finishing with 1 jingle bell jog.

Even more fun if you sing the whole thing!

OPTION 2 (quick version – approx 5 mins)

Simply do round 12 i.e. work through the board once (in either direction). So you’d do 12 x extending elves, 11 x squatting snowmen, 10 x rudolph rows, all the way down to 1 jingle bell jog. Quick and effective, but gets your heart rate up for 5 minutes.


Jingle bell jog = 1 short jog (around a garden, back and forth to a bench or – if indoors – run on the spot for 30 seconds).
Twinkly tucks = 2 tuck jumps (or do high knees R+L for lower impact)
Pres(s)ent ups = 3 press-ups (any level – standing, knees, full press-up)
Christmas Crunches = 4 ab crunches (do a bridge if you need to avoid sit-up type movements)
Star jumps = 5 star jumps / jumping jacks (or do one sided for low impact)
Rocking Robins = 6 rocking plank
Turkey Climbers = 7 mountain climbers R&L
Sleigh legs = 8 bicycle legs (or toe taps) R&L
Ice skater = self explanatory… 9 Ice skater R&L
Rudolph rows = 10 rows of any kind e.g. kettlebell or band upright row
Squatting snowmen = 11 squats of any kind (standard, KB squats, squat jumps)
Extending elves = 12 back extension
Home depot self checkout

If you don’t know what any of those exercises are, you’ll find them on YouTube.  Enjoy!