Fitness tips for the holidays | Health & Food

How to maintain your weight during the season of indulgence and merriment

 

We have all experienced the endless buffets, desserts and yummy baked goods that friends, family and coworkers tempt us with during the long season that started back on Thanksgiving and runs right up to New Years’ Day. 

It’s very difficult to avoid packing on a few unwanted pounds, and maintaining our workout regime seems impossible when there are so many activities that call to us. However, with the proper plan, you can avoid the regret and the disappointment that leads us to make those familiar New Year resolutions to do better. Here are my top five tips to help you this season. 

Remember your reason for your fitness goal. It seems simple but starting each day with a reflection of our goal and why you are working towards it will help you make the right decision when confronted with the choice between a cupcake or a treadmill. It’s a simple daily routine that can make a huge difference.

Have a plan and stick to it. It’s great to have a goal but without a plan, there is no way that you are going to stick to the behaviors that make progress towards that goal. It might be blocking out a time on your calendar to exercise 3-5 times a week. Maybe it’s a plan to avoid overindulging at your office party by filling up with a healthy salad beforehand and skipping the dessert. Remember, those who fail to plan, plan to fail. 

Write it down to make it real. Without a written goal and a plan of action, your fitness goals are just a wish and the likelihood of reaching your target is slim. I suggest starting a journal with your goal, your timeframe for achieving it and your plan of action. It will help tremendously to track what strategies are working and what needs to change.

Measure it. I have seen many folks avoid the scale all season long, only to be unpleasantly shocked at the reading when they finally check after the holidays. Regularly checking your stats helps you see what is happening and can help you avoid letting things get out of hand. Remember it’s just a number on a scale and the scale is a tool to track how we are doing on our goals. Don’t let it make you feel bad or defeated.  

Use accountability partners. We all start out motivated when we have a goal but we can quickly forget our goals or justify our procrastination since we are so busy this time of the year. An accountability partner can be there to remind us along the way why we are sticking to our plan and help us stay the course. Use friends, family or a professional to hold you accountable if you really want to succeed. You can also find someone else with a goal and hold each other accountable.  

The holidays should be a time to enjoy festivities with friends and loved ones but it doesn’t mean you have to regret the consequences to your waistline. A little planning and accountability will help keep you on track to maintain your progress and even reach your fitness goals before the year is up. Make sure to stay the course! 

Patricia Sullivan is the owner and co-founder of All Bodies FItness, LLC. She leads a team of 10 personal trainers throughout the U.S., providing online and in-person training and life coaching. Contact her at www.AllBodiesFitness.com

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