How To Stay Fit Over The Holidays

It happens every year. You eat healthy and stick to your fitness regime from January to November. Then, December comes and all of your efforts are abandoned. You succumb to the chocolaty gooey goodness that is Christmas, park your derriere in front of the holiday TV shows, and pack on pounds of pudginess.

December's indulgences can lead to January regrets

December’s indulgences can lead to January regrets

No one is saying that you can’t have that shortbread cookie or that you must forgo your evening with Charlie Brown and his sad little tree. By following a few pointers you can be festive and stay fit.

1. Enlist a Fitness Friend.

Okay. Santa–or that God-forsaken Elf on the Shelf–may not keep tabs on adults. Your holiday fitness friend, however, can hold you accountable for all those hours spent watching Home Alone numbers one, two and so on, while devouring a bag of Hershey Kisses. Pick a friend that will silence your protests–even if they involve kicking and screaming–and drag you to the gym or for that walk around the block.

2. Leave your home

When the mercury plummets below zero and it’s dark out before the credits roll on Dr. Phil, it’s tempting to become a hermit. Bad idea. Your house is filled with food and puffy couches. Instead, consider embracing the snowy white outdoors. Try a winter sport. Take up a new hobby. And take advantage of daylight by going on a nice winter walk.

3. Be chintzy with your cheating

Yes, you can have Camembert on your favorite cracker and still stay fit. The trick is to have a taste–not a truckload. Choose your foods wisely. Try to fill up on healthy foods like vegetables and fruits before you meander towards the artery-clogging array of appetizers. And, whenever possible, skip dessert.

4. Drink in excess–water, that is.

Water is your best stay fit ally when it comes to waging war on a widening waistline. It will keep you feeling full longer and is a calorie-free replacement for sodas and juices. Alcohol, on the other hand, is full of empty calories. Plus, the more you drink, the more likely you are to try to “soak up” some of the booze with food. Yes, a seemingly benign cocktail could lead to a caloric catastrophe.

5. Buff your bicuspids

Nothing beats the feeling of minty breath and running your tongue along a smooth set of chompers. Who would want to spoil the moment with food? Yes, brushing your teeth right after a meal will help you fight the urge to partake in snacking.

6. Go the extra mile

December is, obviously, no time to abandon your exercise routine. Instead, opt to extend it. Lengthen your run. Add extra sets to your workout routine. Forgo the elevator and take the stairs. Move a piece of exercise equipment to a spot in front of your TV. Remember that calories can multiply over the holidays, so you need to work extra hard to burn them off.

7. A Family Affair

It’s often said that “misery loves company,” so why not recruit your family in your fitness fun? Throw on the snowsuits and build a bevy of snowpeople or have a good old-fashioned snowball fight. Strap on some snowshoes and wander to places previously unexplored. Or revisit the splendid days of summer at your local wave pool. Not only will your bodies thank you, but you will also enjoy some great family time.

With a little bit of stick-to-itiveness, you can avoid the horror of humongous hips and remain healthy. So, enjoy that piece of fruitcake–yes, the words “enjoy” and “fruitcake” can be found in the same sentence. And have yourself a festive and fit holiday.

How do you maintain your figure over the holidays?

Kimberley Laws
I am a freelance writer, avid blogger, illustrator, and aspiring novelist who thinks the world is a terribly funny place filled with bizarre things to observe--and, of course, comment on.
Kimberley Laws

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