12/22/2013

TIPS TO STAYING FIT AND HEALTHY DURING THE HOLIDAYS

Most people look forward to the holidays. You've worked hard and it is finally time to throw your legs up and relax. The Christmas season especially, is always packed full of events: carol services, weddings, Christmas parties, etc. You most likely would have your mouth moving most of the time. I have attended quite a lot of events myself this season and have already indulged in a lot of "mede mede" junk food that was served at the parties. I've had to pay by working extra hard to burn the calories off. I've still however managed to resist putting any and everything, that entices my eyes, into mouth. So how do you stay fit the during the holidays? Here are a few tips I have practiced:


1. Eat before you leave home: We all probably were trained to eat at home before attending parties. For my mum, it was a must so we did not go hungry and start begging for food at parties. Well, I have found this rule works also if you are trying to eat healthy. When you are hungry you tend to lose self control and are more likely to throw anything into your mouth/ overindulge. Eating before you leave home helps you stay in control. 

2. Go for the Healthy option: Although not all events you attend may have a variety of options, some may. Where you have an opportunity to choose a healthy option, then please do. I have observed at events and also at all you can eat restaurants that the salads never run out. If you are attending a party where everyone brings a dish, you can opt to bring in a healthy dish you love.

3. Keep Exercising: I instruct fitness classes in a number of gyms and I can say that during the holidays people abandon exercise. While it may be hard for you to attend the gym as regularly as you did, you can have a holiday workout plan. Get out your fitness DVDs, take a walk with the family, do something to exert some energy. Remember you tend to eat more during the holidays, so you must burn those calories.

4. Keep your refrigerator and shelves in check: Many people tend to go over budget during the holidays. You stock the shelves and refrigerator with so much cookies, cakes, ice-cream, etc. Do you really need all the food items you buy? Some people use the kids as an excuse to stock up with junk and then end up consuming it all before the kids even get to see them. 

5. Have a Project: Yes the holiday is here and you plan to rest, but you are more likely to overeat when idle. Use the holiday to bond with the family, sort your closet, tend the garden, clean out the refrigerator, clean the windows, etc.

6. Get some Sleep: You probably have so much running out to do. Perhaps you are planning a holiday event, buying gifts, visiting all your relatives and travelling from city to city. I have been guilty of not getting enough sleep. The past two weeks have been crazy, preparing children for Christmas shows, planning a fitness party and so much more, I found it difficult sleeping, even when I laid down to sleep, I could not because my mind was too busy thinking about all that I had to do. Remember that proper sleep and relaxation will help keep your immune system strong, as well as relieve stress. After a long day of holiday preparations, sip herbal tea, meditate, snuggle up with a book, or watch a classic holiday movie with your family. Take the time to wind down so you can get a full eight hours of quality shut-eye. Don’t feel obligated to do everything and see everyone.
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