It seems like without fail, every year as soon as Thanksgiving hits, whatever healthy habits we’ve been faithfully become a distant memory. It’s as if we’ve never before had a piece of pumpkin pie or hunk of peppermint bark, and almost as if we’ll never have the opportunity to indulge again in the future (as in, next year). Not to mention our workout routines go out the window. (Unless, of course, you’re hitting the Corefire Holiday Challenge!)
Chalk it up to a combination of seasonal stress, an extra-long list of to-do’s, hectic schedules, and of course the constant availability of yummy holiday treats – the holidays are a recipe for diet disaster and exercise amnesia.
While the deck might be stacked against your best laid intentions, there’s no reason to give up on your tried-and-true healthy habits. Rather then start the New Year off feeling like you need to “get back on track,” use this joyful season to mindfully indulge without any guilt, while still doing your body good.
Read on for Coach Liz’s tips to stay on track this holiday season:
- Set realistic goals: This may not be the time to expect to hit Corefire four times a week, AND the gym twice, AND have a fresh-made dinner on the table nightly. But, that doesn’t mean you have to completely fall off the wagon. Set realistic weekly goals for healthy habits like exercise, cooking at home, and yes, self-care. Consider your overall schedule and obligations, and calendar these commitments just like you would any other important appointment. You will end up feeling more successful and motivated, rather than defeated.
- Enlist the support of friends & family: After all, tis’ the season to spend time with loved ones! Make a date to workout with your husband, ask your co-worker to be your accountability buddy, request that your sister brings her delicious brussel sprouts salad for Christmas Eve dinner. You’re certainly not the only one going through the healthy holiday struggle; make your goals known to those close to you so you can help one another stay accountable and committed.
- Plan your plate: Even if you’re able to maintain a consistent exercise routine, there’s no denying the daily temptation of cookies, candy, cakes and more. While you can’t always foresee when a plate of sugar-coated Santa cookies will magically appear, you can plan to include lots of fiber-rich produce and hunger-busting protein in most meals. Try to have a balanced breakfast, lunch, and dinner daily; when you have a holiday party on the agenda, be sure to have a light but filling snack beforehand so you don’t show up starving.
- Indulge mindfully: There is no denying it – there WILL be temptations! But instead of digging in just because something is presented to you, ask yourself: Do I really want this? Is it worth it? If both answers are “yes!”, then sit down, relax, and enjoy yourself. Because Grandma’s Hanukkuh latkes are totally worth the wait, but Aunt Sue’s fruit cake most definitely is not.
What are your best tips & tricks for making it through the holiday season feeling your best? Comment below!