Here are our top tips to avoid falling into the “holiday derail”
1. Plan your December workouts now
With all the parties you have lined up, it is going to be easy to skip a workout or 5 if you don't plan around these events. Sneak out to the gym at lunch and get a 40-minute session instead of skipping your training altogether. Or maybe knowing your time is limited, do 30 minutes of exercise at home every morning before heading to work. You will need to plan and organize your training schedule around your events - get organized now. Don't leave it. Fail to prepare and prepare to fail.
2. Increase your NEAT (non-exercise activity)
Walk everywhere you can, take the stairs. At minimum make sure you get 10k steps per day Refer back to our post on NEAT here.
3. Go for a walk after every lunch and dinner
To help prevent overeating, head for a short walk. Just knowing you need to do this will help you avoid eating so much that you can’t move after!! Eat until you are 80% full.
4. Consume high protein meals
(Yes, this includes breakfast!) Protein not only aids in recovery from training, it helps keep you satiated so you're less likely to reach for all the chocolates at the office kitchen. We also like to make sure we opt for high protein starters and mains when out. Rarely after having a big steak we have room for dessert!
5. Track your water intake
Not only will you be consuming more alcohol than normal over the holidays, the times you're having it actually take away from your normal water consumption: wine at lunch, scotch with dinner - you get the idea! Staying hydrated can be challenging, so keep it on your mind and make sure you're tracking daily. No one likes working with a hangover so health benefits aside, avoiding the hangover makes it worth it!!
6. Minimize liquid calories
Our caloric intake spikes a lot over the holidays. We go from having one course meals to having starters, mains and desserts multiple times per week plus alcohol plus circulating treats at the office! That's a lot more calories than our bodies normally consume! Keeping this in mind, it's probably best to avoid the fancy specialty Starbucks coffees or sugary cocktails as they add even more calories to the equation. Did you know a venti peppermint hot chocolate has 530 calories!?!
There you have it, our top tips for avoiding the holiday derailment. If you're worried about losing all your gains or want to avoid gaining that extra weight, implement the steps above.
Bottom line: keep it simple: move daily, eat until you're 80% full, use moderation when consuming alcohol and drink plenty of water!
If you still need a fool-proof plan, check out our Finish Strong Challenge. It will cover your training needs and habits to focus on for the hardest part of the year (the last 6 weeks!)
We’d like to hear from you! What strategies will you implement this holiday season? Leave a comment or share this article with a friend.