Christmas is coming, the goose is getting fat...
This is a hard time for a lot of people, both emotionally and physically. We get caught up in a cycle of stress, poor eating habits, enjoying too many holiday parties and then feeling guilty and we just keep going through the cycle over and over again. The holidays are supposed to be about celebrating with friends and family, enjoying the company of others and taking time to reflect over the past year.
So what strategies can you build on to help get you through the upcoming festivities?
First off, forget the "all or none principle". Appreciate that you will stray and that's ok. Realizing this will help you stay more centered and you'll understand when you can handle being naughty vs nice. Just be sure to check back in and balance yourself.
Remember, it's always easier to keep up than to catch up.
Some other things should should focus on include:
1. Prioritize Sleep
When you let sleep suffer, you're setting yourself up for failure the next day, and then you get stressed, and then you won't sleep well, and then you set yourself up for failure the next day, and then... Get the point? Make sure to schedule sleep like you would an appointment. Also when you don't get enough sleep you produce more of the hunger hormone "ghrelin" which also encourages you to eat sweets.
2. Know how to recover
We've all been there - the stress of work, getting your shopping done, finances, family expectations build up and we make poor choices. Add to that the lack of sunlight and the cold and you have an easy recipe for disaster - if you let it be that way. It's ok to indulge a bit, but keep it to a minimum. Replenish your body with good nutrients that will help it thrive during this stressful time. Also talk to your doctor about adding supplements like Vitamin D to your diet. Your body and brain will thank you.
Make a choice to have healthy choices easy and convenient. Ditch the sweets and sugar laden snacks and switch them out for fruits, hard boiled eggs or yogurt. Hook up with a gym buddy even if it's to get out for a walk at lunch. Pack your gym bag the night before. Make a week's worth of dinners on a Sunday afternoon. Look at what is keeping your from succeeding and turn it into an enabler for success.
4. Don't have time to hit the gym?
Sometimes we don't but don't make it an every day excuse. This will only create a more negative mindset and will be detrimental when you do get back. Instead take your every day activities and add a bit more activity. Walk during conference calls, turn your dog walk into a workout - do some squats, run/walk. Remember something is better than nothing.
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