By the end of the Christmas and New Year period we are all on pretty intimate terms with our sofa. Not only have you moulded an indent which perfectly matches the contours of your body, but your sofa probably knows the washing instructions for all your clothes, and also probably knows that it’s about time you washed them.
There’s nothing wrong with that of course, Christmas is a period of indulgence and enjoyment and you’ve earned it after a long, tough year. But after a couple of weeks where you have learned to eat, drink, read and sleep on the sofa, in addition to exhausting your Netflix subscription, it’s not so easy to get off it.
Just because the clock has ticked into 2019 doesn’t mean you are suddenly feeling the urge to jump off the sofa; it’s still dark and cold outside every evening after work and who actually wants to go to work anyway? That said, you also recognise that you need some balance in your life, and while you will never fool yourself that you are the kind of person who will spend an hour at the gym before and/or after work to shift the Christmas excesses, or will pound the streets in Lycra of an evening, you appreciate that you have to do ‘something’.
This is where your two-week boot camp on the sofa brings its reward, because we have devised a way that you can stay on the sofa, keep up with your favourite box sets and still manage to shift a few pounds and tone yourself up for the year ahead. You might get some funny looks from the dog, who is used to you lying in stasis attached to wine, pizza or your smartphone, but that’s a small price to pay for the mental and physical wellbeing you are about to enjoy, simply by moving yourself ever-so-slightly from your incumbent position on the sofa.
Here are five simple exercises you can undertake on the sofa, either in isolation or as part of a routine.
- Knee to opposite elbow: Sit upright on the edge of the sofa, with your knees bent and your arms bent at the elbow and facing upwards. Alternating between your right and left leg, raise each knee to touch the opposite elbow.
- Leg lift: Sitting upright on the edge of the sofa, support your back by placing your arms either side of your hips and keeping them straight. Extend your legs out straight and, keeping them rigid, lift each leg in rotation and hold it in mid-air for a few seconds.
- Criss-cross legs: Prepare yourself as above, but lift both legs together and, pointing your toes, criss-cross your feet over each other three or four times, keeping your legs in mid-air. You can also try rotating your feet in a circle. One may feel more comfortable than the other.
- Punches: Again, sitting upright on the edge of the sofa, punch your arms out in front of you alternately, keeping your arms and back straight and rigid. Then punch them directly above you alternately in the same manner.
- Tricep dip: For this one, sadly you need to get off the sofa, but not for long. Sit on the floor and lift your arms to grip the sofa behind you with your palms. Extend your legs in front of you and push your arms to lift your whole body off the floor, hold for a second or two and then gently release your arms to place your body back on the floor.
It is entirely up to you how many repetitions you do, the beauty of these routines is that you can do whatever is comfortable for you and you can increase it as you see fit. At the end of the day, you are sat on your sofa, probably in your PJs, so nobody is going to judge you. These are great, leisurely exercises to work your arms, legs, abs and back muscles and soon enough you will have lost a couple of pork pies, a bottle of wine and that slab of Christmas Cake nobody else was eating. And all without moving off your lovely Nabru sofa.