With the holidays coming up, staying healthy can be a real challenge. People like to celebrate with food and drink in the weeks leading up to and during the holidays and the New Year, so it’s even harder than usual to stay disciplined with diet and exercise. But I’m here to say that there is hope and you can still make it through the holidays without gaining 5-10 pounds by January!
For most people, food isn’t just fuel—it’s a way to feel comfort, enjoyment, relief from stress, etc., so it’s easily one of the best things about the holidays. Unfortunately, that also means it’s one of the worst things for your body. But you don’t have to deny yourself all of the delicious and rich foods that you come across. It just comes down to eating smart. If you’re going to partake in some calorie-rich foods, try to choose your calories wisely, whether that means smaller portions or eating vegetables over cake. To avoid overeating, try taking a 10-minute break from food and see if you’re still hungry. If you’re going to a party, don’t go on an empty stomach or you’ll end up trying to eat everything that you see. And finally, drink plenty of water! It’s good for your immune system too (especially with flu season upon us).
This time of year gets a bit busy so I understand that people give up on their workout routines. If you haven’t been taking your regular trips to the gym, try to at least do physical activities whenever you can. Choose to take the stairs instead of the escalator (something I’ve suggested a few times now and always do), do some simple workouts at home, (check out my YouTube channel), and go out for walks during your lunch break. To help with consistency and motivation, try something like a fitness challenge. For example, Trifecta is doing a 25 Days of Fitmas Challenge. For 25 days you get a new workout every morning and it’s up to you to push yourself to do them. Posting your workouts on social media keeps you accountable for the workouts as well, in case you appreciate the added motivation. The routines aren’t long and recovery/rest days are included as well. (Don’t worry, we’ve thought of everything.) And since the holidays are about being with friends and family, try to get them to do challenges or work out with you to make it fun.
Lastly, and maybe most importantly, if you get off track, don’t give up. It’s never too late because ultimately, there is no cut-off date for eating healthy and working out. Just because it’s the “most wonderful time of year” doesn’t mean that you need to go all-out with eating and drinking heavily and giving up on workouts. And if you do go a little overboard with eating and get a little too lax with exercise, that’s fine. Just keep going with the workouts and maybe don’t eat those free cookies at the office every time there’s a new gift basket!