During holidays or special events it’s easy to get out of your normal exercise and nutrition routine, but it doesn’t have to complete derail you! Being intentional with how you approach a holiday can help you enjoy the day without feeling guilty and having a healthy balance. Here are my top tips to help you successfully approach a holiday:
1. Use The 80/20 Rule
Focus on choosing nutrient dense foods the majority or 80% of the time and give yourself a little leeway for some foods you really enjoy 20% of the time. Make sure you are getting some fruits, veggies, and protein on your plate- the more colorful the better! You can also make healthier ingredient swaps for your favorite recipes like maple syrup or honey instead of refined sugar, brown rice pasta instead of regular, etc.
2. Don’t Skip Meals Before An Event
Focus on eating balanced meals and snacks up until the event so that you don’t get too hungry later. It’s tempting to skip breakfast and lunch to “save your calories”, but you’ll be more likely to be so hungry that you overeat instead of savoring your food.
Make smart decisions but don’t over restrict yourself. This will make your healthy lifestyle more realistic and not like you need to throw in the towel! If you eat a little too much one day, don’t punish yourself or just let that one bad day turn into weeks of unhealthy eating. Just start fresh the next day with healthy choices!
3. Get Some Movement Done In The Morning
Get a workout or some movement done in the morning- starting the day with a healthy habit will give you momentum to make better choices throughout the day. It also minimizes that you will get busy later on and have to skip it!
Incorporate simple body weight exercises that you can easily do anywhere such as lunges, planks, and pushups. If you’re traveling, consider investing in some resistance bands or ankle weights that are easy to pack. Try to do your workout first thing in the morning. Whether it’s outside doing a home workout, run, or at the gym…get active! This will get your body going and ready to make healthy choices to replenish itself.
4. Be Aware of Liquid Calories
Many holiday drinks such as alcoholic drinks, sugary coffees, hot chocolate, and ciders are full of sugar and empty calories. If you’re in the mood for a holiday drink let yourself indulge but also make sure you are drinking enough water and consider making a healthy twist on your favorite beverage! For my favorite Starbucks order, I ask for half of the syrup or sugar-free syrup with non-fat milk to slash over 100 calories!
5. Take Ten
It can take a moment for your body to register that you’re full. To avoid that uncomfortable and overstuffed feeling, eat until you’re about 80% full and take ten minutes before going back for seconds. This allows your body time to process how full you are- the goal is satisfied, not stuffed.
6. Drink A Glass of Water Before Each Meal
Drink a glass of water before you sit down to eat your holiday meal! Water helps your body control cravings and differentiate between hunger and thirst. Aim to drink at least 64 oz of water everyday which is approximately 8 glasses.
7. Aim To Get 7-8 Hours Of Sleep
Sleep helps your hormones to stay at normal levels, control cravings, boosts immunity, and repair muscles- just to name a few benefits!
With all the busyness of the seasons it’s easy be stressed and to not get enough sleep. Priortize some time for yourself and make sure you are getting adequate rest…you’ll notice a huge difference on your mood and energy levels!
8. Focus on Enjoying Time with Friends and Family
Don’t beat yourself up over an over-induglence or two! Instead of focusing on the food, refocus your mindset to being more present with your loved ones. Let yourself enjoy the holiday!
Remember that what you do 90% of the time is more important than what you do 10% of the time. Long term consistency > short term perfection wins every time! Need to come up with a plan for your long term health that fits into your lifestyle? Apply to work with me below!