I think I can speak for a lot of us when I say having that extra plate of food or another glass of wine during the holidays is nearly impossible to pass up. Along with watching football all day and lounging around on the couch without a care in the world. Yes, this is a time to catch up with our family and friends, share lots of laughs and spend time with everyone, but it can sometimes lead to slacking with our diets and staying active.
Appetizers can be dangerous! I suggest eating a little something before leaving home. If you are worried you will just eat everything in site because you show up hungry, take a second and have a healthy snack before heading out the door. It will allow you to navigate the table full of food when you arrive before making any decisions. Take a minute to check out all the options and think before you take a scoop of everything. I know that we want to try a little bit of everything so that we do not upset any relatives, but your overall diet is more important. Make your plate colorful! The more colors you see, the healthier it should be. This shows that you grabbed veggies rather than just meat and potatoes. Maybe bring something of your own. Encourage your healthy lifestyle and let others try something new too.
I know that I can not pass up on another scoop of mashed potatoes or that extra cookie thats just calling my name, but stay strong! We have to try to enjoy everything in moderation. Get caught up in a nice conversation while having dinner instead of sitting in silence and stuffing your face. Give your tummy breaks to digest and have a sip of water in between bites. You should feel more full and not have the want to get up and get a second helping.
It is always nice to sit down to dinner or talk to relatives with a glass of wine in hand but try to alternate with water. For every glass of wine you drink, match it with a glass of water. It may sound silly but it will keep you hydrated and on track with becoming a healthier you.
Instead of watching football, why not throw one around in the backyard. Have a nice friendly game of touch and get everyone together for a few laughs. This does not only get you moving but it will creative some of the most amazing memories and could even become a tradition for years to come. You should still wake up and fit in your workout before stuffing your face, but even something as simple as taking a walk after dinner or playing catch can make you feel so much better about staying active. Make time for it and you will do it. I am sure others will be willing to join you as well, all you have to do is ask them!
Try not to overthink things. The holidays can become overwhelming but do not get yourself down! It is so important to stay on track and keep a balanced lifestyle, even during the crazy holiday season. Stick to your normal routine as best you can. Do not make excuses either. Wake up and get that workout in before even thinking about what to make for breakfast or if the apple pie will be ready in time for dinner. Put you and your workout first, everything else will fall into place after.
Most importantly, focus on having fun with your family and friends. The joke that your uncle told during the never ending game of monopoly will be remembered because it is more important than the burnt brownies that grandma made. Whether the food is good or bad, the memories will still hold. The jokes will be told, the laughs will be shared and everything else just doesn’t seem as important anymore. All the stress about making the perfect dish is just nonsense, it will happen every year. Allow yourself to step out of the kitchen and truly enjoy being with your family this holiday season!