By: Coach Melissa Nunn
Tis the season to be stressed and running around to either find the “perfect present” or attend another holiday party. This time of year it’s easy to “let yourself off the hook” and miss going to the gym because of all of these previous engagements. The problem is, once you start the cycle of skipping workouts and indulging in every holiday treat it’s easy to find yourself a couple pounds heavier come January 1. The last thing you want is to lose some, if not all that you have worked so hard to accomplish this year or these last few months. Here are some helpful strategies to keep you on track with your workouts:
- Have a schedule: you know when/ where/ and what time the events you are planning on attending are going to occur. If you have a choir concert in the evening, set your alarm and get to the gym in the morning. If you have a morning function, plan for an afternoon/evening workout.
- Set a goal to make it to the gym a minimum of three times a week: use a calendar to mark off the days that you have attended… if you can, beat your goal, if not, feel accomplished for getting those days completed!
- Have friends or significant others help keep you accountable: make gym dates and agree to meet each other at them gym. Car pool and agree to pick each other up. When you know someone else is expecting you to show up, you are less likely to miss your WOD.
- If all else fails, do some home workouts: squats, push-ups, and sit-ups can always be done at home when you’re in a hurry. It could be a long chipper, a quick EMOM, a simple Tabata, or even rounds for time of simple bodyweight movements.
- Give yourself a movement challenge: set a goal number of reps to complete before January 1st of a movement that may not be your favorite, take burpees for example. Then, everyday make yourself complete a set number of reps until you have reached your goal. For example: 365 squats before January 1st. That means you have do 19-20 squats a day until you have completed all 365 squats. It keeps your body moving and you have a goal to work towards.
If your problem isn’t missing the gym, but controlling your appetite and avoiding office temptations and party food, what should you do then? Here are a few simple solutions to keep the holidays from turning into a time for binging:
- Water: before any holiday gatherings be sure to drink plenty of H2O. Not only will this help to prevent a hangover, it will also help reduce the overall liquid calories you are consuming. Greet your friends, colleagues, family while sipping on water. After enjoying a cocktail, go back to the water. Alcoholic drinks make it easy to forget what you are about to put in your mouth but by now, you should already be somewhat full.
- If the party has a serve yourself appetizers, find the smallest plate and fill up on veggies first. They will keep you fuller, longer.
- Find the item that is tempting you the most, and have one. If after the veggie sampling, and water, you find yourself being called to the little pizzas, gingerbread cookies, etc. Then indulge in one. ONE! Just the one, enjoy it; savor the sweet treat then move on. Any more than that and you’re wreaking havoc on your body: remember sugary foods (and drinks) will only inflame the body.
- Most importantly, the festivities aren’t about the food they’re about the people. Enjoy each other! Move away from the serving table and catch up with those you around you!
Hopefully this advice helps you enjoy the holidays with a little less stress. Remember all it takes is some mental preparation in the beginning and willpower and you can make it out of the holidays without the added weight of the over-indulging or skimping on workouts.