YOKOSUKA, JAPAN -- Sailors and their family members stationed in Yokosuka, Japan, have a new way to burn calories and stay fit during the holiday season. The 12 Cardio Days Before Christmas fitness program was developed by Morale, Welfare and Recreation (MWR) and is designed to motivate sailors to embrace the Navy's Culture of Fitness—even during the holidays.

Participants log the number of minutes they spend exercising each day. Those who exercise for at least 20 minutes a day for all 12 days of the program will receive a T-shirt designed especially for the event.

”It encourages them by giving them a reward,” says Luke Nelson, MWR fitness program coordinator. “It encourages them to track their minutes every day and look at it at the end and say, ‘Wow, I worked out a lot this week.’”

The program isn’t about improving sailors' physical readiness test run times, although that could be a benefit.

“We like to incorporate the spouses and other family members,” Nelson says.

About 100 people have signed up for the program, but a final count of participants won't be known until everyone has turned in their tracking sheets, Nelson says.