“‘All I want for Christmas is…’ a list of amazing December fitness events to go to in London. Ideally some with a Christmas theme and a few free sessions thrown in for good measure. Oh, and I’d like to know if my parkrun’s on.” Funny, you should mention that.
Zeo Presents: An Evening of Mindfulness
7 December, 19:30
Heard people talking about mindfulness, but not really sure what it is or how the heck you’re supposed to do it? Get yourself along to this session then. A collaboration between healthy soft drink Zero and The Mindfulness Project – who offer courses and classes in the subject – you’ll learn all about mindfulness and discover some exercises and techniques you can use to destress and stay calm in your everyday life.
FREE PLACES AVAILABLE
Get in Shape by the end of 2017 Rooftop Class with Hex Fitness
Weekday mornings until 22 December, 07:30 and 08:30, £15 (discount for block bookings)
The Gardening Society at John Lewis, Oxford Street
What’s the best place to see Santa (aside from the bottom of a pint glass)? Up on a roof of course. We can’t guarantee you’ll spot the big man himself at these 45-minute circuit classes in the indoor pop-up gym on John Lewis’ rooftop, but you’ll certainly get a sweat on. We’ve tried the summer classes and the instructors were great. Sessions are £15 but you can claim a free one while stocks last by filling in this form. You’re very welcome.
Nutcracker Ballet Barre
9 December Frame Kings Cross, 14:00-16:00, £25
16 December Frame Victoria, 14:00-16:00, £25
Whether you spent your childhood doing ballet or screaming every time your mum tried to get you near a tutu, it doesn’t matter, everyone’s welcome at this festive ballet barre class. Apparently there’ll be a few pirouettes and leaps along the way. Sounds cracking, nutcracking (sorry, the jokes get worse than usual at this time of year). Go the whole hog and grab yourself a cheap tutu from Camden market, get yourself in the party spirit.
Britney, Destiny’s Child, Mariah Carey and Jingle Bell Rock Dance Classes
9 and 16 December, 12:30 and 2:15, £15
Drink, Shop & Do, Kings Cross
Want to get your Christmas dance on and impress at all your parties? Course you do. Head over to Drink, Shop & Do for one of these festive dance classes then. On Saturday 9 in just 90 minutes you can learn the moves to Britney’s My Only Wish or opt for the later class and nail Destiny’s Child’s 8 Days of Christmas instead. On the 16 December get your groove on to Mrs Christmas herself, Mariah Carey’s All I Want for Christmas or choose the later class where you’ll perfect the moves to that Mean Girls’ classic, The Jingle Bell Rock Dance. No dancing experience whatsoever is required (phew).
Lululemon Run x HIIT
10 December, 10:00
Lululemon Covent Garden
Party season set in for you yet? Blast away the cobwebs with a bit of fresh air on this outdoor run complete with HIIT session. Led by PT Leo Savage, all abilities are welcome, you just need to register on the link above. Oh, and it’s in Covent Garden so you can always get some Christmas shopping in after.
Lululemon Savasana Party
10 December, 18:30
Lululemon Covent Garden
Fancy doubling up on the free Lululemon sessions this Sunday? In the evening there’s a special yoga session with Kelly Brooks (no, not Kelly Brook the glamour model), based on relaxing, nurturing and restorative poses. It’s making us feel sleepy just writing this. Perfect way to chill in the crazy season. First come first mat so get there early.
FORGE for runners
Sundays, 10:00 and 11:15, £16 (discounted if you buy a pass)
Ministry Does Fitness, Elephant and Castle
Christmas time, mistletoe and wine, runners fretting that it’s nearly marathon training time.
If you’re prepping for a spring race or simply enjoy running and think your glutes, quads, core etc could do with a bit of strengthening to help you run stronger and with less risk of injury, then this new hour-long class from Ministry could be just the ticket. Taught by runner Beefy (of Track Mafia fame), classes involve a mix of running, drills, agility, coordination and strength work to get you fitter, faster and stronger.
Yoga for Skiers and Snowboarders
Wednesdays and Thursdays until March, 12-12:45, £10 (discount for block bookings)
Danceworks, Bond Street and Flow Dance, Oval
Heading to the slopes this season? Get your body prepped for all that bending, falling and sliding around on the snow with lunchtime yoga classes designed specifically to work on the balance, core and functional movements you’re going to need.
Various dates and times until 21 December, £16.52-£19.70
Covent Garden and St Pancras start points
Yule Jogs, like Yule logs but not quite as chocolatey. If you want to check out some of the capital’s best festive lights and twinkly trees then join one of these guided group runs from Secret London Runs. Christmas tunes will be played, there’ll be seasonal tales told along the way, and you get a free Santa’s hat, always a bonus. Five and 10k options and different paced runs available so no need to worry about getting left behind.
Xylem and Phloem – Yoga, brunch, and Wreath-Building Workshop
16 December, 10:00-14:00, £70
BLANK 100, Islington
It’s not the cheapest day out but it’s value for money (have you seen how much they charge for fresh wreaths these days?!) – and you get both your body and your creative juices flowing too. Led by yoga teacher Tash Richards and super-florist Freddy Owen, you’ll enjoy 90 minutes of yoga and meditation before scoffing down some tasty brunch bowls. Then you’ve get to spend the next two hours elbow deep in foliage and fir cones as you create your own Christmas wreath masterpiece to take home. There’s mulled wine to boost your creativity too. Think I’ve sold myself on this one, who else wants to come?
Mariah Carey All I Want for Christmas Dance Workshop (Beginners)
Christmas Swag: Destiny’s Child 8 Days of Christmas Workshop (All Levels)
16 December, 13;30-15:00, £20
17 December, 15:00-16:30, £20
YMCA Tottenham Court Road
You can tell it’s Christmas because there are more festive dance classes than you can shake a candy cane at. And we’re certainly not complaining. These two options come from the guys at Seen On Screen – one of London’s hottest dance providers – so expect sass, sparkle, silliness and some epic instruction.
Festive Vino Vinyasa
18 December, 18:30-20:00, £16
The Boutique Workplace, Shoreditch
Get your yoga on to Christmas tunes (if you’re not sick of them yet!). Fancy dress and singing along are encouraged. After, there’s a couple of glasses of the good stuff from The Organic Wine Company and homemade mince pies too. Festive winner.
RunThrough Lee Valley VeloPark 5k, 10k, 10mile, half marathon
23 December, from 09:00, from £10
Lee Valley VeloPark, Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park
Fancy getting your hands on this festive medal? Just think how good it’ll look hanging from your tree. Well all you have to do is sign up for one of the Lee Valley Velo park races and it’s yours. Run Through always give good medal – we really wanted to do their Greenwich 5k and 10k on 17 December but it’s already sold out – so we’ll have to opt for one of the Velo Park distances instead. Be warned though, the route is on a one-mile circuit round the Olympic Park so if you’re going for the longer distances make sure you don’t get dizzy. Kids can also run a one-mile race for free.
Christmas Day and New Year’s Day
Various times and locations
Why are my local parkruns never running on Christmas Day? Gutted. If, you want to get up bright and early on Christmas morn and run 5km round a crisp park with loads of other festive runners/hungover people escaping their relatives you’ll find a list of the parkruns operating on the 25 December and 1 Jan above.
The Big End of Year Run London 2017
31 December, 09:00
Our mate Kieran has been organising this run for five years now. We went along last year and it was aces. Come and get involved and see out 2017 with a social run around the streets of our fair city. There’ll be chat, there’ll be laughs, you’ll probably see some touristy sites, and then we’ll go to the pub after. The full run is 13.1 miles but you can meet up and drop off along the way and cover as much or as little as you like. Some people run 5k, some run 10k, but everyone runs together and no one gets left behind. Perfect pre-party prep.
Reset & Rebalance Yoga Workshop
31 December, Frame Shoreditch, 11:00-13:00, £25
6 January, Frame Kings Cross, 11:00-13:00, £25
Get yourself all zen and focused for the new year ahead with this two-hour yoga workshop focusing on YOU! Restorative poses and rebalancing for the mind and the body. Sounds blissful. Just what you need to recharge before you go out and ruin all those good intentions with a massive New Year’s Eve blowout! You’ll probably want to book into the January session as well then.
Start Fitness Serpentine New Year’s Day 10k
1 January 2018, 11:00, £20
Want to start the new year off on a smug foot? Sign up for the Series 10k in Hyde Park and run past Winter Wonderland and through Kensington Gardens. Just don’t run too fast incase you get breathalysed. (Interesting fact, my mates got engaged at the end of this race a few years ago.) If you’re feeling a little tender, there’s also a 3k fun run (although we have a feeling this is more intended for kids).
Know of any amazing fitness happenings in the New Year? Drop us an email email@example.com