The holidays are so hard for people trying to stick to a healthy lifestyle! Between the scrumptious turkey and macaroni and cheese to the decadent desserts it’s no wonder so many people don’t stay on track with their fitness goals during the holidays. So how do you stay on track during the holidays? These tips will help you maintain your healthy lifestyle during the holidays and make you feel proud of yourself.
Remember Your Goals
You know the cliche saying “when you feel like giving up, remember why you started”? Well, that is exactly what you should be reminding yourself of when you feel tempted to venture away from your health and fitness goals during the holidays.
It is so easy to let yourself go and forget about all the hard work you’ve put into getting yourself on track. Don’t let a few months of (delicious) festivities make you lose all the progress you’ve made so far.
Meal Plan and Prep
Start with laying out your most unhealthy meal of the day, then plan around it. If you are tracking your calories and/or macros remember that this meal is going to be the densest. In other words, this meal will consume the most calories of your meals. After planning your biggest meal then continue to fill in your other smaller meals.
Limit Your Alcohol Intake
Trust me, I am not telling you to stop drinking altogether. All I’m saying is to be picky about when and what you drink. Besides giving your body a bunch of empty calories, your body stops burning off the food you ate and instead focuses on burning off the alcohol (which is actually hard for your body to do). So that big plate of turkey and dressing you just ate will take much (much) longer to burn off if you pair it with a glass of wine. This is why I suggest watching how much you drink!
Say no to the Extras
When using dressings, gravy, and sauces it is very easy to use way more than you need. We have all been there! You can always add more but you can’t take it off.
Ask Yourself: Do you Want or Need it?
This is a simple but effective question. I know you want that extra scoop of mashed potatoes, but do you really need it? Asking yourself this question will help you cut a lot of unnecessary calories at your holiday gatherings.
We’ve all been there. It’s been a long day of cooking and mingling with family. You’re exhausted and that pan of brownies is just staring at you from the kitchen counter. It would be so easy to give in and eat half the brownies in the pan, but then you know you would feel like crap later.
Don’t just sit there staring at the brownies; distract yourself! Take a shower, go talk to your family in the other room, go clean something! Do anything to get your mind off of those brownies. It’s mind over matter when it comes to resisting food temptations.
The body has a hard time determining the difference between hunger and thirst. Remember to keep drinking water throughout the day to ensure that your body knows when it is actually hunger.
Eat Protein First!
Protein must be the priority when you are preparing your meal! When fixing your plate, start with the protein first, then veggies, then starchy carbs. If you feel yourself getting full during your meal, focus on finishing your protein first.
Find Some Active Social Events
Remember that social events can be active and fun. Ice skating, skiing/snowboarding/snowshoeing, or sledding are all fun and active ways to be social during the holiday season. You will be surprised by how much you burn when having fun!
Don’t Forget to ENJOY
Food is not the bad guy- that is a very bad mentality to let yourself get into and it will harm your health and fitness journey. Food is part of life and is meant to be enjoyed during special occasions, especially during the holidays! Don’t beat yourself up if you want to have a treat (or a couple) during the holidays. Enjoy it!
If you do fall off the wagon and overindulge during the holiday season, that’s ok! It is never too late to get back on track and keep working towards your goals. The holidays are a time to enjoy the special people in your life and make some memories. Live it up and enjoy your holidays!