The festive season is here, and that can only mean diet debauchery, abandoned fitness regimes and six-hour TV marathons. But it doesn't have to be this way. With a little forward planning and self-discipline, it is perfectly possible to enjoy a happy festive season and enter the New Year feeling fit, active and healthy.
Many people fall off the exercise bandwagon this time of year, or rule out the idea of getting into shape during the festive period, assuming there is no point in starting until the New Year. Given that one of the biggest barriers to exercise is lack of time, a break from the usual routine can provide the ideal opportunity to begin or maintain physical activity. Staying active over the holidays not only reduces your chances of gaining weight, it also helps energise you, reduces stress and gives you a break from the chaos.
We want to encourage you to start this New Year on the right foot. The holidays are a time for celebration, friends and family, and a well-deserved break. Such a celebration doesn't have to mean gluttonous eating and drinking, or deprivation for that matter. It is possible to enjoy all the festivities that help make this season enjoyable. Here are some great tips to help you keep your health over this holiday period.
It’s more important than ever to stock your kitchen with healthy foods. Have healthy snacks handy. The more convenient they are, the more likely you are to eat them. Instead of thinking about what you shouldn't eat, promise yourself that each day you’ll eat your three to five servings of vegetables.
Schedule your workouts just as you would any other appointment. It's ok if you can't make it to class, but make sure that you get some activity in at least three days per week.
You probably aren't aware how much extra food you consume just from people offering it to you. A sample at the market here, an extra biscuit at an office party there and it all adds up. Just think twice before you take that food and decide if you really want to eat it.
Keep your water bottle with you at all times. You should be drinking eight glasses of water each day. One handy trick is to buy a two litre water jug. Fill it up in the morning and know that you need to finish it by the end of the day.
With balance, moderation and by planning ahead you can enjoy your holidays the healthy way.
– By Briana Habermann, Physiotherapist, Healthfocus Physiotherapy
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