When it comes to the holidays (or any time, really) being healthy is NOT about being perfect or keeping up the perfect routine.
In fact, trying to keep up with a strict diet or workout regimen is a recipe for total burnout.
The holidays are a time for adaptation and setting yourself up for success in ways that are MANAGEABLE so that you’re clear and focused on what’s ahead rather than groggy and trying to reverse the stress you just put your body through.
As I prepare to spend time with friends and family, I’m throwing down with a list of my FAVORITE ways to support your mind and body this holiday season so you can actually enjoy this time and feel revived and excited for the new year!
We have to plan ahead if we’re going to be successful. This goes for fitness, nutrition, EVERYTHING.
If I’m going into a busy week, sitting down to look at my week ahead and asking, “when will it be hard for me to eat healthy?” And, “What can I prep ahead of time?” is an absolute must.
This doesn’t mean I plan every second of every day BUT I do know when I’m going into situations that will monopolize my time or tempt me to overindulge (and not in the fun, feel good way).
Let’s say you’re going to a party on Friday night, getting extra greens in your morning smoothie, eating a full lunch, or grabbing a snack before you go out (or even bringing your own healthy party favor!) are all great ways to support your fun without the risk of going off the deep end.
Hydrate, Hydrate, Hydrate
I can’t stress this one enough! Hydration is SUCH a simple way to facilitate lymph movement, which works to release the toxins we’re exposed to (and ingesting) during this busy season.
Not only does it move lymph and boost your immune system, staying hydrated also eases that holiday hangover and limits over indulgence. As a rule of thumb, have a glass of water after every alcoholic beverage. Trust me, you’ll feel 100x better!
Bonus tip: add lemon to your water for added benefits!
Incorporate Moments of Movement
You don’t have to get an intense, hour long workout every day but it is important (and actually very simple!) to interject moment of moment that’ll get you feeling SO much better.
Have a few 10-15 minute workouts on hand (that you can do without a gym) so that when you don’t have a ton of time, you can pump these out instead. Alternately, there are small movements you can incorporate into your routine that’ll add up to LOTS of movement throughout your day. Here are a few quick things you can try:
- Do some squats while you’re waiting for your coffee to brew.
- Park further away in the grocery store parking lot.
- Check out this post for more movement hacks!
Again, having a rigid diet and exercise routine during the holidays is not always reasonable and (truth bomb) it isn’t always healthy.
If you struggle with this, I have some REALLY good news for you. Being surrounded by family and friends, being joyful, etc. are all things that DO make a huge difference in the way we assimilate our food.
If we’re maintaining a crazy diet that puts us into stress mode, our body doesn’t actually digest the nutrients as it would if we were in a joyful state. The lesson here? BE PRESENT and recognize when it’s okay to have a slice of pie.
Learn to Say NO
There are going to be times when you’ll want to say NO in order to avoid feeling like crap. Indulge when it’s appropriate BUT be aware and recognize when you want to save the pecan pie until after you’ve had some time to digest.
On that same note, don’t get into the habit of depriving yourself. This goes back to balance and awareness, but deprivation often leads to overindulgence and guilt which can start a wicked cycle.
Take a deep breath and tune in to your needs when it comes to making these kinds of decisions.
For some, the holidays aren’t always joyful. Family time can be stressful, we might be thinking of those we’ve lost, or more and this, my friend, is where mindfulness plays such a huge role. Anytime I start to feel these things, or enter a difficult situation, I ask myself where I can find gratitude. This has been a complete game changer for me.
If you know you’ll be entering a stressful moment, I encourage you to write down 3 things you’re grateful for ahead of time.
Start A New Tradition
In my family, after we’ve DEFINITELY overindulged at brunch (balance, peeps) we all get our snow suits on and head to the park to go tobogganing.
You can start a tradition by going on a walk, building a snowman, putting the music on and dancing with the kids (or even just yourself!), or doing SOME kind of movement! These are some amazing ways to move your body and start feeling better after you’ve just indulged in some amazing holiday food.
Seriously, there are SO many different things I’m BURSTING to include in this post but I don’t want to make it too long (I know you’ve got sh*t to do). If you’d like to share your own hacks OR see what else we’ve got up our sleeve this holiday season, feel free to hang out with us on Facebook OR sign up for the newsletter below!