Have you ever had a tension headache? It’s not fun. Have you ever had a tension headache for five days? It will make you rethink your life choices.
The quick fix for an epic tension headache is a muscle relaxer. But if the thought of popping muscle relaxers to deal with career stress results in even more stress, hit the gym.
According to the Mayo Clinic “virtually any form of exercise, from aerobics to yoga, can act as a stress reliever.” (Exercise gives you endorphins — endorphins make you happy!) But spending an hour on an elliptical machine is even worse than doc review.
If you’re looking for a slightly more interesting way to stay fit and relieve stress in the new year, here are seven exercise trends that won’t cause you to die of boredom.
- Pole Dancing. It’s easy to dismiss pole dancing as a stripper activity, but it’s actually a great workout. According to Shape, pole dancing can be both a cardio and strength workout, which can burn 800 calories an hour or more.
- Cross Fit. These one-hour classes — combining elements of Olympic weight lifting, calisthenics, and gymnastics — were initially favored by cops and military-types, according to The New York Times. Now they’re populated by yuppy hard-bodies.
- Spin. If you can ride a bike, you can take a spin class. Spin classes incorporate jumps and challenges to make the time pass quickly. If you’re up for the ultimate spin/cult experience, try a class at SoulCycle.
- Barre. Focused on micro-movements, barre classes let you pretend that you’re coordinated enough to be a ballerina while building killer muscles in your legs.
- Yoga. Don’t yogis seems like happier, healthier people? No matter where you leave, you can probably find a yoga class in your neighborhood.
- Zumba. Once you get over the initial bout of I-am-so-completely-uncoordinated self-consciousness, you’ll probably agree that Zumba is the best thing to happen to dance since the Patrick Swayze-Jennifer Grey lift in “Dirty Dancing.”
Why only group classes? Because you’re more likely to stay throughout a workout if your early exit will be noted in a room pumping with aerobic judgment. You can make that natural competitiveness that works so well for you in the courtroom, pay off in the gym.
Or, if sweating with a group of strangers isn’t quite your style, try running or swimming. (Again, any form of exercise can help with stress relief.) The most important thing: Take care of yourself.