December is a is a time of parties, dinners and FUN. Lots of great time spent with family and loved ones. It can be so hard to stay healthy during this time, so I wanted to share a few tricks with you for staying on track this season. There are small things that you can do, that mean moderation, NOT deprivation. How about going through December on a reasonable path, so that you don’t feel guilty and spend January in deprivation mode trying to lose the weight that was mindlessly gained in December.
Sounds obvious right? It SOUNDS obvious, but there is typically so much going on this time of year that we can forget to have enough water. An easy solution is to carry a bottle with you at all times. Also, if you are going to a party at night be sure to drink up beforehand! I start my day immediately drinking 20 oz of water. If you are cold (as I often am) trying drinking tea or hot water with lemon.
2. Small Meals As part of the 21 Day Fix I follow meal plans that consist of 5-6 small meals a day. This might consist of the following: Healthy Shake (I recommend Shakeology - a superfoods meal replacement shake), apple with peanut butter, salad with chicken or other protein, hard boiled egg with tortilla and fruit, chili with avocado and cheese. Small meals keep you feeling full throughout the day and prevent you from overeating. They also help fight cravings and the rummaging around for food after a meal.
3. Find alone time The holidays are such a time of GIVING that it can be easy to forget about ourselves. I often have to remind myself of this - but it’s OK to take a break. Take an evening or some time out to do the things you love - whether that’s exercising, watching your favorite show or simply getting a good night’s sleep. Just a little time out can be amazingly refreshing!
4. Sleep, sleep, sleep I can’t stress this enough. After being sleep deprived for WAY too long (some of it very recently) I guard my sleep fiercely. Getting at lest 7 hours of sleep at least a few times a week can really do wonders for your mindset and energy.
5. Self Awareness Think about what you are eating. Don’t just mindlessly dive into a huge meal and eat with abandon. Use moderation - we stress in our challenge groups, that true health and nutrition is the 80/20 rule. If you are being healthy 80% of the time you can have those treats. Don’t deprive yourself, it will only backfire! Just be aware of how MUCH you are eating. You can absolutely indulge, please don’t feel you can’t, just be mindful of how you feel at the same time. 6. Movement Try to keep up exercise this month. It can be hard to get in exercise when it’s dark and cold but even a little bit is better than none. If you don’t feel like a vigorous workout, then just move. Go for a walk, do something around the house. Take the stairs instead of the escalator. Just these simple things keep your health and spirits up.
7. Accountability If you DO have health and fitness goals this month join a group or tell your friends. It’s always easier to have the support of like-minded people when you are pursuing something related to health and fitness. My challenge groups are a great way to do this!
8. ENJOY This should be a season of enjoyment, NOT a season of self abuse and punishment. It IS possible to enjoy moderation and go into January feeling good. Even if you are normally very health conscious and this month you go off the rails, it’s OK. Just try to recognize what is happening and make some healthy choices…going for a walk, NOT having dessert every night.
The most important thing is to really cherish the moment, after all that’s all we have! My next challenge group kicks off December 14th and I'd love to help you stay healthy this holiday. If you’d like to work with me, please email (firstname.lastname@example.org) or connect via the right navigation bar, or comment below. I’d love to hear about your health goals and/or questions on holiday survival!
Finally, how are YOU going to stay healthy this month? Comment below!