It’s that wonderful time of the year again! Time with loved one’s is the best part of the holiday
season, and a time that most of us always look forward too. It is a typically a festive and happy time and
there are many things that come with it. Two of those are a busy schedule and a lot of really great food.
Those of us that try to keep a healthy life style normally dread that part of the holidays. But, honestly,
it really isn’t necessary. There are a quite a few great strategies that will allow you to have your pie and
eat it too.
The first is exercise. I know, but you’re busier during the holidays and you don’t have
time…..Sure you do. You may just need to makes some adjustments. If you do have the time to continue
your full workouts, it is probably the single best thing that you can do during the holidays. But, if like
most, your schedule is tight, then simply shorten your workouts to the 3-4 most important/effective
things. Here are a few suggestions:
Squats, squats, squats- they are a tremendous exercise that work your entire body
Chin-ups, even if you need assistance
Try to get to max HR twice per week. Interval training is a great way to do this and if you do
it correctly you can be done with your workout in about 10 minutes. Try 40 second of squat
jumps, 20 seconds of chin-ups and 20 seconds of push-ups then rest 40 seconds and repeat
until you reach HR max.
Park your car in the parking place as far from the door of the shopping center as possible.
You will get your walking in, you will get some grip work in (grip strength is highly correlated
with risk of disability later in life), and it will encourage you to by smaller (and fewer) gifts
DO NOT SKIP YOUR WORKOUT ON A PARTY DAY. Even if you just walk for 30 minutes the
day of a party, it will help offset the effects of the food…and the beverages.
Save your cheat days for holiday parties. If you have two that week, pick the one that will have
the best food to use for your cheat day. For the party that is the cheat day, pretty much anything is fair
game (especially if you had a hard workout that day). Do not skip any meals before the party, as this
will make even more ravenous for those bad foods and you’ll end up gorging yourself at the party. In
fact, try having a healthy snack like a piece of turkey with a handful of raw carrots and some guacamole
before you leave for the party. But for the others, there are a few rules:
1. Do not skip any meals before the party, as this will make even more ravenous for those bad
foods and you’ll end up gorging yourself at the party. In fact, try having a healthy snack like
a piece of turkey with a handful of raw carrots and some guacamole before you leave for
2. Use a desert plate as your plate the entire night. If anyone asks, just tell that you like little
plates because they make you feel bigger. All jokes aside, a simple “I am just watching my
weight” will suffice for most. Don’t let those that won’t accept that answer, sabotage your
health with their own.
3. You can make as many rounds as necessary with the desert plate but keep the first two
rounds to meat and vegetables only.
4. After the first two rounds, if you still want the desert, decide which looks like the best
reward for your discipline and try to stick with just the one desert. This will help you get full
before you get to the foods that you shouldn’t eat as much of and will help you cut down on
the damaging effects.
There is only one other rule…GO ENJOY YOUR SELF! And have a great Holiday season!