According to one famous old song, "the holiday season is the most wonderful time of the year". Yet Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanza and New Year's (plus the hectic weeks surrounding them) often leave many of us feeling depleted, depressed and downright stressed out--no matter how much we were looking forward to time spent with family and friends. The time around the holidays can be the hardest few weeks to stick to a healthy living lifestyle. You are tempted by sweats, treats and just way too much food in general at every corner.
I would like to offer you five tips have helped me in the past to stick to my healthy regime and stay relaxed around the holiday season.
1. Eat before you go to any holiday gathering. You might be thinking of skipping meals to indulge in one large holiday dinner with the entire family. Skipping meals will make you hungry and more likely to overeat. Start your day with a good, healthy breakfast. You don't want to spend the day being irritated because you are starving, or be ready for nap time after overeating.
2. Drink some water before you go and alternate higher calorie drinks like alcoholic beverages, non-alcoholic cocktails or hot chocolate with water while you are at the holiday party. Drinks are easy to consume but can have a lot of hidden calories in them.
3. Bundle up and hit the road for a brisk walk, jog or run. Exercise produces endorphins, feel-good chemicals that will make your entire body happier. Plus, a few minutes out in the cold winter air will perk you up and give you energy to get back to everything on your holiday to-do list. Join our FREE challenge, the Kwavithon where you are encouraged to move your body for at least 30minutes every day in December.
4. Don't cut out your holiday treats completely. Here at Kwavi.com we don't believe in deprivation or starvation. Allowing yourself the occasional small indulgence is encouraged as you are less likely to go overboard when you eat your favorite treats from time to time. The key is to enjoy small portions or bites of your favorite foods.
5. Take some time to relax. The holidays can be a very stressful season if not properly managed. It is so easy to overeat or medicate ourselves with food when we are stressed. Schedule some extra time just for you. Sit in front of the fire with a good book or your favorite magazine, take a bath or go for a walk. Find something that you enjoy and will make you feel calm and help you distress.
Enjoy the holidays and remember they are not only about food, but more importantly about spending time with friends and family together. Research has shown that physical affection increases oxytocin and dopamine, chemicals that reduce stress. Make plenty of time throughout the holiday season to hug your friends, kiss your spouse, and cuddle with your kids. You'll feel better, they'll feel better, and you'll all enjoy these joyful weeks a whole lot more.
Have fun during this special time of the year, be mindful and enjoy the occasional treat.
Weight Loss & Lifesytle Coach