If you’re like me, you hear the word holidays and you initially get this excited feeling remembering all the great things that the holidays bring – fun music, beautiful decorations, smiles from the kids and a warm, cozy feeling while you spend time with family and friends.
Then reality sets in, and you realize it’s not quite the Norman Rockwell moment you have pictured in your head. Stress and anxiety begin to set in just thinking about everything that needs to get done and the conversation in your head starts to go something like this:
“Did I actually say that I wanted to host this year? I must have been on crack when I said that.”
“How many days are left until the new year? Crap! I haven’t even started working on my resolutions from THIS year yet.”
“How am I going to stay on track with healthy eating when people keep bringing in such yummy cookies? I mean I don’t want to be rude and not eat ANY of them with all the blood, sweat and tears that went into making them. I’ll just have one or maybe two. Well this third one was stuck to the second so that really only counts as one, right?”
“When am I going to find time to get shopping done let alone workout? Ugh!”
Trying to juggle it all on a daily basis as a mom is pretty exhausting. Now, throw in the chaos of the holidays and I go into straight up survival mode. This usually means falling back into old habits where exercising and eating healthy fall to the bottom of the priority list, but I am determined that this year will be different. So how do you manage to survive the holidays and stay on track with your health?
- Bring Something to the Party – Not only will your host be happy that you’ve brought a delicious dish, but you’ll also have food that can help keep you on track with your health goals. Try this Faux Cookie Dough Dip. This recipe is a definite crowd pleaser for all ages.
- Get Plenty of Sleep – Lack of sleep can lead to mood swings, decreased productivity, lowered immune function and sleep shopping (you know when you are so tired and you purchase items online that you have no recollection of actually purchasing the next day like a giant blow up unicorn sprinkler…no regrets). Getting enough sleep each night will ensure that you are your best self for the holidays and also prevent you from biting everyone’s heads off. Trust me, your family and probably your co-workers will appreciate it.
- Be Mindful – Did you know that diet and exercise are only 50% of the equation to weight loss? In addition to diet and exercise, you need to make sure you are moving (more on that below) and that you have a positive mindset. Mindfulness practices such as meditation or yoga require no special training or ability and they have been scientifically proven to improve physical health, reduce anxiety and enhance happiness.
- Keep Moving – It’s great to exercise, but it’s even better to make sure you are staying active and moving throughout the day. What’s the difference? Exercise is a type of movement with a distinct goal – burn fat, build muscle, get faster, get stronger or train longer. Movement is just what you do when you are living life. We are built to move. Go for a stroll and go shopping at Peddler’s Village, take the stairs instead of the escalator at the mall or simply go for a walk with the dog or your family (whichever one you enjoy more). Aim for 10,000 steps per day which equals about 2 hours of movement.
- Give Yourself Grace – Hey, it’s the holidays. It’s crazy for everyone. Don’t beat yourself up about it. Now is not the time to get all judgy on yourself about not having the perfect health routine. You may indulge a little bit more or your workout routine may be slightly off this season, but don’t stress yourself out. Chronic stress can actually be harmful to your health and forces your body to pile on fat especially around the middle. Give yourself permission to be kind to yourself and give yourself some grace.
- Get Support – Are you feeling overwhelmed and need some guidance on your fitness goals? You are not alone on this journey. We are here to help you. Make a free appointment with a wellness coach. That’s what we’re here for – to help support you in your goals towards better health. You can schedule your appointment at any time by calling your preferred club location.
Doylestown – 215.794.3700; New Hope – 215.862.2200; Warrington – 215.918.5900