Can you believe the holidays are fast approaching? You know you’ll be attending all those food-centered festivities and dreading the looming New Years resolution to drop the weight you gained at back-to-back family dinners where you just couldn’t say no to Aunt Mary’s sweet potatoes. Now is the perfect time to make small changes you can keep up with throughout the holidays.

We caught up with Samantha Lovett, a certified personal trainer, who provided a few tips on where to begin on our road to better health…

While the internet is a fantastic place to find free advice, there is so much conflicting information, and it can be overwhelming to decipher the diet contradictions. So the best place to start is by MOVING. Of course, always be sure to check with your doctor before starting a new workout regimen.

Whether you are walking, running, kayaking, hiking or doing HIIT circuits in your living room, being active is key. A gym membership is not required - there are plenty of at-home activities you can do to raise your heart rate without purchasing any expensive or bulky equipment.

Here’s a quick total body workout that does not require any equipment and will raise your heart rate. Keep in mind that if any movement if it hurts - don’t do it, if it burns - it’s working!

Do each exercise for 45-60 seconds. Rest when needed, however try to push yourself to do all 8 exercises once before resting for 60 seconds. Repeat 3 times.

Push-Ups - Modified from knees or hands on wall.

High knees - Stand with your feet hip-width apart. Lift up your left knee to your chest. Switch to lift your right knee to your chest. Continue the movement, alternating legs and moving at a sprinting or running pace. Keep core tight.

Bird Dogs - On your hands and knees, lifting opposite hand and leg, hold or do repetitions.

Dips - Using your couch or a sturdy chair, start with your legs bent and lower yourself until arms are at 90 degrees, stay close to the chair.

Punches - Bend your knees, and hold your hands up near the top of your chest. Starting with your dominant arm first, punch your arm forward, slightly rotating your shoulder, and twisting at the torso. Keep your core nice and tight punch towards opposite side.

Superman - Lay face down on a mat with arms outstretched. Keep your hands and arms straight throughout the exercise. Raise your hand and legs 4-5 inches off the ground. Hold for 5 seconds, then return to starting position.

Squats - Stand tall with your feet hip distance apart. Your hips, knees, and toes should all be facing forward. Bend your knees and extend your buttocks backward as if you are going to sit back into a chair. Make sure that you keep your knees behind your toes and your weight in your heels. Rise back up and repeat.

Leg Lift Hold - Start with your legs flat out on the floor. As you exhale, lift your legs off the floor from the hips and bend your knees towards your chest. Keep your back straight and flat against the floor. Keep your core nice and tight, pull belly button towards floor. If you feel it in lower back, STOP.

These suggested exercises may not be for you but remember, some exercise is better than no exercise. Here’s to a happy and healthy you!