Start your week smart: Omicron, Desmond Tutu, Elizabeth Holmes, Myanmar, fitness

By Faith Karimi, CNN

The holiday season can be a challenging time for maintaining your health and fitness. Between social events and opportunities to overindulge, it’s easy to sabotage your health routine. But there are ways to holiday-proof your fitness.

Here’s what else you need to know to Start Your Week Smart.

The weekend that was

• As the highly contagious Omicron variant spreads, experts are urging people to upgrade face masks.

• Archbishop Desmond Tutu, an anti-apartheid leader and voice of justice in South Africa, is dead at 90.

• Airlines have canceled thousands of flights as staff and crew call out sick during the Omicron surge.

• An attack in Myanmar reportedly left more than 30 people dead and Save the Children staff missing.

• European governments condemned the arrival of “mercenary troops” in the west African nation of Mali.

The week ahead


It’s verdict watch as juries are set to reconvene in the separate trials of Ghislaine Maxwell and Elizabeth Holmes. Maxwell is accused of sex trafficking, while Holmes faces criminal fraud charges. The juries will continue deliberations after a holiday break.

A hearing is scheduled to address a Colorado district attorney’s motion asking the court to reconsider Rogel Aguilera-Medero’s sentence. The truck driver was sentenced to 110 years in prison for a crash that killed four on Interstate 70 in Denver.

Los Angeles police are expected to release bodycam video, 911 call recordings, radio transmissions, CCTV and other evidence from the officer-involved shooting that left a 14-year-old girl dead at a Burlington Coat Factory. She was in a dressing room with her mom. Police had fired at a man suspected of attacking a woman in the store, they said.

In Myanmar, a court may deliver a verdict in the latest trial of deposed civilian leader Aung San Suu Kyi. She is accused of possessing unlicensed walkie-talkies and other foreign equipment, which if she’s found guilty could carry penalties of years in prison.


Democrat Eric Adams becomes the new mayor of New York City. A private swearing-in ceremony traditionally takes place at midnight. Adams has canceled a public event due to the surge in coronavirus cases.

Want more 5 Things? This week on the Sunday edition of the 5 Things podcast, we talk with CNN Chief Medical Correspondent Dr. Sanjay Gupta about our progress in the fight against Covid-19 amid an Omicron-fueled surge. Plus, we check in on other major health stories from 2021 and get some advice on crafting New Year’s resolutions. Listen here!

Photos of the week

Monkeys warm themselves by a bonfire at the Japan Monkey Centre in Inuyama. Here are 26 moving, fascinating and thought-provoking images from the week that was, curated by CNN Photos.

What’s happening in entertainment

He watched lots of TV so you don’t have to 

CNN’s Brian Lowry put together a “best of” TV list for 2021, a daunting task in the age of limitless quality content and blurred boundaries between traditional and newer formats. He considered plenty of titles and highlighted what’s hot, what’s not and everything in between.

Quiz time!

Instead of our normal weekly news quiz, we have a special quiz to keep you in the holiday mood! Here’s a question to get you started:

Many Japanese families make a tradition of eating a Christmas meal at which fast food restaurant?


B. McDonald’s

C. Pizza Hut

D. Subway

Take CNN’s holiday quiz to see if you’re correct!

Play me off

Raising a glass to 2022

We made it to the last weekend of the year!  Whew, what a ride. Here’s to a much better 2022! (Click here to listen.)

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