Here are some of my top tips for staying fit and healthy over Christmas:
1. Start each day as a new day! You cannot change the past. If you did not train yesterday, had one too many drinks at a party last night, or ate something you wish you hadn’t, get over it! It is within your power to change that now.
2. If you have your regular training program, why not use this time to spice it up a bit? Give yourself a new challenge. Go for a run somewhere new, do some hill runs or an interval/speed session, go to a different class at the gym, change your strength/weights training, ride a bike, grab a skipping rope or go for a swim – a change is as good as a holiday, right?
3. If you are not at home this Christmas and you are going on holidays (lucky you!), you don’t need to have loads of equipment with you – just your training gear! Walk or run, or if you are near a beach then swim! If you want to do some strength training, what about using your body weight? Push ups, Tricep push ups, squats, lunges, step ups on a park bench? If you are not familiar with an area and you want to go for a run or walk, pick a direction, run or walk for 20, 30, 40 mins, then turn around and go back the way you came. Challenge yourself to get back to your starting point in a faster time – add more intervals!
4. Use this time to think about your goals and challenges for 2015 – fun runs, half marathons, triathlons, bootcamps, marathons, iron man – have something to aim for, to keep you on track!
5. If you are only just starting out on the get fit and healthy experience, do not let the festive season scare you! You can do it – believe in yourself, everyone starts somewhere!
The festive season for many is about family and friends, eating and drinking!
How can you get through this time without putting on loads of weight and undoing all your hard work? Here are some of my top tips for eating and drinking well over the Christmas period:
1. First of all, do not feel guilty. The feel guilty hormones are so much worse for your body than the feel good hormones! So go back to point one – forget about it and move on! Next time you go for that ‘bad food’, think about how you felt last time you did it!!
2. Think about your portion sizes. Food at this time of year is SO delicious and you usually only get it at Christmas time – Christmas Ham, Turkey with all the trimmings etc! If you find you go over board at Christmas, think about the food you really want and try a little bit of everything! Share a piece of Christmas pudding, get a half serve, put it on a smaller plate so it looks bigger, but is really half the size!
3. Eat slowly, chew your food, savour every mouthful. When you feel full, STOP! Listen to your body!
4. After lunch, because you haven’t over done it on the food front, you could go for a walk with family/friends, take the kids to the park, or go for a walk on the beach, rather than sitting in the chair and having a nap, because you ate too much and now cannot move!
5. Stay hydrated – drink 2 litres or more of water each day, mix it up a bit and add a squeeze of lemon or lime to it! If you want to have a few drinks, make sure you have some water in between each one – drink slowly and enjoy it!
Most of all, enjoy the Christmas break, if you have been training hard all year round, it is OK to have a bit of a break and have a few indulgences. Let your body recover from hard training, then you will be more pumped and motivated to get back into it in 2015, ready to achieve those goals & challenges that you have set!