03 Dec 5 Simple Tips for a Successful Holiday Season
Healthy living and the holidays don’t usually go hand in hand. In January, it’s a much more popular topic. Nevertheless, that doesn’t mean that you can’t find a happy medium over the next few weeks. It is possible to enjoy yourself, support your body, and stay on track this holiday season. Here are a few simple tips that will help you avoid common holiday landmines. These tips are easy for anyone to integrate. Plus, following these suggestions will leave you feeling good come January 2nd.
I know, I know. Everyone already knows that exercise will help them stay healthy – and who has the time over the holidays?! Every minute is packed with parties, errands, and no one has time. But hear me out on this one.
One reason we tend to over-indulge over the holidays is stress. And 80-90% of us feel greater stress over the holiday season. So, what is a proven method to reduce stress? Yep, exercise. To receive benefits, you don’t have to go crazy. Just 15 minutes per day makes a difference. The results are even better when you get outdoors and into nature. Wake up 15 minutes early to take a walk, go for a hike on the weekends, head to a yoga class, or play basketball with your kids. It doesn’t have to be fancy. Just plan ahead and make time to move each day.
Eat something before you head out.
Whether its a holiday party or a marathon errand run, it’s best to be prepared (and full) before you go. This will help you avoid several holiday landmines.
- Ever been uncomfortable at a holiday party? Yeah, me too. And it’s super simple to hang out by the treat table and snack mindlessly to keep occupied. If you are already satisfied before you go, you will make wiser choices.
- Avoiding any certain foods like dairy or gluten? There is nothing worse than going to a party and realizing there is only 1 or 2 things to eat. Or even worse, making a choice that will leave you feeling horrible the next day because there are no options for you. Eat before you go, plus offer to bring a dish that you know will work for you. I promise, no one will be offended when you bring extra food to share. Chances are, there will be someone else at the party that will be incredibly thankful for your healthy dish.
- Avoid the low blood sugar crash. Ever been out too long and all of a sudden felt weak or like you may eat the person next to you if you don’t get food NOW? Eating before you head out will help a lot. Also, stock up on healthy snacks at the grocery store to bring with you whenever you go out.
Don’t forget to sleep.
Not getting enough sleep each night impacts more than just your energy. Less than 6 hours of good sleep will actually make you more hungry and crave calorie-dense foods the next day. Donuts, burgers, breakfast burritos, or a caramel brûlée latte with whip cream will sound REALLY good. Make a point of getting a good night’s sleep and you’ll have less cravings.
Drink lots of water.
Start each day with a 20 ounce glass of room temperature or warm water. The benefits are even better if you add a squeeze of fresh lemon juice. Your body will get a good start by beginning the day hydrated. When you are hydrated, you will experience less cravings throughout the day. Plus, it will support your liver and help to detoxify your body.
Avoid added sugars.
Stick with me – it’s not about the calories. Added sugars can leave us feeling lethargic, grouchy, and make it hard to sleep. Although cookies may get the blame, a lot of added sugar also comes from what we drink over the holidays. Coffee drinks, egg nog, wine (many which contain added sugars), and festive mixed drinks = sugar bombs.
- Opt for regular coffee or espresso (or better yet, a green tea).
- Drink wine without added sugars like Scout and Cellar, Smart Vine Wine, or Secco Wine Club.
- Opt for a simple, yet festive mixed drink such as a Gimlet with fresh squeezed lime, a Paloma with fresh grapefruit juice, or a Martini.