10 Tips for Keeping on Track With Your Fitness Goals During the Holidays
Keeping on track with your fitness goals during the holidays is a tricky business
Not only are there more claims on your time cutting into your workout, but the temptations are greater too. The best way to stick to your guns over the holidays is to have a plan ready in advance.
1. Make a Chart
This may seem basic, but it helps. Make a simple chart of how many minutes you want to exercise per week and fill in each space afterwards. This gives you a little flexibility towards reaching a goal of 300 minutes per week, for example. If you have to skip or shorten a workout, it will be very clear how many minutes you must make up later in the week.
2. Mix It Up
During the holidays when everything is topsy-turvy anyway, try something new. Add in fat burners to your daily supplements, work-out to Christmas music, or go to a Zumba class with a friend. You’re not making a lifelong commitment; you’re just taking advantage of an off-kilter schedule to try something different.
3. Schedule Your Workouts
Looking ahead to the week, find space each day to block off exercise time. You may not be able to hit the gym at 6 pm every day or make all the 10 am yoga classes that you do during other months, but again, be flexible. Your goal should be to stay active however you can work it out.
4. Create an Exercise Grab Bag
Before you get overwhelmed with holiday commitments, create a grab bag of easy 10-20-minute exercises that you can pull from when you only have a few minutes to spare. Include exercises like walk up and down the stairs five times, free dance to three songs, walk around the block twice or two 20 push-ups against the wall in a standing position. The idea is avoid using “no time” as an excuse not to do something.
5. Eat Before You Go Out
A night out with friends or a holiday meal at a relative’s house can easily lead to overeating. The simple solution is to eat before you go. Make yourself a healthy snack or drink a protein shake. That way, you can put only the most delicious foods on your plate rather than everything.
6. Make Your Own Drink Tickets
Alcohol is empty calories, but unless you never drink, it’s hard to say no every time a beverage is offered. Make yourself two drink tickets just like the ones you get at banquets. Put them in your pocket before you go out. Throw one away after each drink. This will help you sip and savor the drink you have and also help you keep track of how much you are drinking.
7. Ask for Help
Your good friends will want to help you reach your exercise-related goals. Don’t be afraid to ask them in advance to refrain from offering you seconds or desserts or refilling your cup of eggnog without asking first.
8. Bring a Low-Cal Dish
No one needs to know that your dish is low-cal. Just put it on the table with everyone else’s casseroles and cookies. Enjoy a generous helping of your own recipe and add in just a touch of other people’s food for show.
9. Ask for Exercise Equipment
When someone asks you what you want for Christmas or Hanukkah, have a ready list of exercise and healthy lifestyle items in all price ranges. Exercise bands, workout clothes, athletic socks, free weights and nutrition bars all make good presents (for you) in a variety of price ranges.
10. Find a Supportive Buddy
Not everyone will be equally supportive to you in your quest to be your best self. Seek out those who are to discuss your goals and avoid the topic with others who don’t understand. If there is no one nearby, look for forums on the internet where people across the country encourage each other towards their weight loss and exercise goals.
Staying healthy should be a priority during the holiday season. Sticking with your goals can be challenging, but with the right plan, it can be done.