When it comes to our fitness and nutrition, we are all guilty of slacking during the holidays. After Thanksgiving, we sort of just take the rest of the year off. We always promise we will get back on track in the new year. But, putting our healthy habits on hold for a month or more can set us back immensely. These tips help us stay on track during the holidays and they can help you too!
Indulge (a little bit)
A lot of people have an all or nothing attitude when it comes to their nutrition. If they have one “bad” thing while they are on their diet, they think they need to start over or that it’s ruined. Not true! There is so much evidence that people who are on strict diets are actually less likely to lose weight and meet their goals. And it is because of this mind set. One or two “bad” meals won’t hurt you, if you get back on track afterward. You know which holidays are coming up and which events you are attending. Pick a couple that are the most important that you want to enjoy and enjoy them! But, remember, portion control. Getting just a few bites of everything will allow you to feel satisfied without over doing it.
Skip the leftovers
Like I said before, one or two bad meals won’t ruin your health. However, eating Thanksgiving leftovers for a week might. If you are hosting, send leftovers home with others, or freeze them to be used later. If you are a guest, politely refuse to take anything home. Getting back to eating healthy right away after a holiday will help avoid one day of eating bad turning into a month.
This can mean a few things. Of course, limiting alcohol intake is important to avoid extra sugar and calorie intake (not to mention a nasty hangover). But, there are other beverages that we should be avoiding, too. Soda, sweet tea, cider, and eggnog can contain a lot of sugar and other unhealthy ingredients. Sticking to water will not only help you stay hydrated, but will also help you feel fuller for when those sweets come around!
It is so easy to get out of the habit of exercising during the holidays. With unusual work schedules and travel, sometimes we just give up at the end of the year. Don’t! When you aren’t traveling, keep to your workout routine, like usual. If you are, try to take a couple walks, do an easy at-home routine, or check out the hotel gym. Even if it isn’t your usual workout, doing something is always better than doing nothing. If you have family visiting, tell them you need to hit the gym for a bit. They’ll understand. Or invite them to come along! A lot of gyms offer guest passes to their members.
Don’t let the holidays be an excuse to not take care of yourself. Keep these tips in mind and always remember why you made the decision to start exercising and eating well in the first place. You are your best motivation!