We’ve been working hard all year, counting our steps, weaning out snacks, and lifting weights. And now, it’s that time of the year - the most challenging time of year for those of us who are trying to stay healthy. Winter is here, just like the family members at your door with a cooking tray full of something heavy and delicious. It can be really, really difficult to not indulge in comfort food and lounging around during November and December.
As a personal trainer (and human being) I understand the temptations that arrive during this season. Here are 4 simple tips to help guide you through the holidays while maintaining your personal health goals.
4 Tips to Help You Stay Fit During Holiday Celebrations
Tip 1 – Plan Ahead
Just like planning out your Thanksgiving outfit, you need have a plan in place for any gathering you attend. Think ahead, don’t blow through your daily calorie count at ONE meal. Break it down into manageable portions and make it a "marathon day". Opt for a protein shake instead of indulging in a big lunch or snacking to keep the cravings at bay. That way, in the evening, you can grant yourself a little leniency for the big Thanksgiving and Christmas dinner.
Tip 2 – Improvise
As the holiday commitments stack up, sticking to the normal workout routine can start to feel like an impossible mission. However, the frantic agenda shouldn’t give you permission to skip getting a sweat. You want to make your workout happen, whether or not the circumstances are ideal. If time will be short in the gym for the day, try turning your regular workout into a quick circuit, or change from standard sets to supersets. Both methods will help maximize time in the gym so you can get in, get out, and enjoy the holiday.
Tip 3- Stay Moving
These next few weeks are all about parties and family gatherings and friends, but when you're making the social rounds, you might find yourself plopped on a comfy sofa. Sitting around at gatherings with families and friends for an hour here and there—especially when combined with a sedentary 9-5 job—can add up to hours on end with little movement. Try your best to keep it moving, even if that means being active at home by doing some house cleaning, turning up the music, cutting up a rug, or cutting up those biceps with a quick living room circuit.
Tip 4 – Try Healthier Recipes
This might be the toughest, but I promise it will be worth it. Try to find healthy substitutes to some of the heaviest holiday favorites. It's a win-win. You'll still get to partake in social gatherings, but without the extra calories. With numerous healthy recipes available, there's no reason you can't find one that will make both your taste buds and diet plan happy.
Written by Tyler Morris, Certified Strength and Athletic Trainer at LifeScape Premier
Tyler Morris is a personal trainer at LifeScape Premier. Click to book a complimentary fitness consultation and see how you can get additional support for your goals this holiday season.