Advent calendars on the mantle piece, Quality Streets on the coffee table and a bottle of Baileys inside the fridge– it’s no wonder Christmas is a notoriously naughty time.
Unfortunately, Christmas calories do count and staying active throughout the holidays is essential when establishing a routine for the upcoming year.
The tasty temptations coupled with stressful social situations (and the alcohol) can disrupt our head-space and throw us off balance.
Let’s be honest, instead of going running, many of us run ourselves into the ground during the festive period – mentally and physically.
So, here are some tips to help you stay on track this season, “yule” certainly feel better for it in the new year:
Food and drink:
- Alcoholic drinks contain calories, a lot of calories. This festive season avoid sugary cocktails – stick to a classic slim and gin or a vodka soda – add a splash of lime or blackcurrant if you prefer something fruity.
- Don’t restrict yourself – after a large Christmas dinner fasting the next day is not a good idea! Eating normally and sticking to your meal plan helps to maintain your body’s routine and can keep you from catastrophically binging later!
- Try not to weigh yourself, it is Christmas after all – be aware that your body will take a while to process your Christmas dinner and occasional (forgivable) slip ups.
- Always remember that food doesn’t have to be unhealthy to be delicious – why not cook up that chocolate and cranberry pudding from the Northern Bootcamp Kitchen Recipe Book.
- If your family or friends live close enough to walk, why don’t you walk there? Instead of getting behind the wheel take a wintery walk – it’s great bonding time for you and your partner. Plus being outdoors is great for your well-being and you not feel as guilty when you indulge in that vodka soda when you arrive.
- Why not go for a Christmas day run? It doesn’t have to be the longest of your life, just a quick 15 minutes – you’ll be surprised just how many members of the running community are out! (Check out our dark night training tips!)
- Ask Santa for some work out gear – getting a new kit, new recipe book, new membership or a boot camp can be the psychological motivation you need to stay on track.
- Set yourself direct but realistic goals, if you usually walk 10,000 steps reduce this to 8,000. You’ll still feel amazing, but you’ll feel more relaxed too (this also works with your number of work outs).
- Give back this Christmas – volunteering and helping people less fortunate is an amazing thing to do and you can’t deny that it makes you feel great too.
- Avoid awkward situations… Do you really need to go for boxing day drinks with that not-so-friendly-friend who only speaks about his new BMW – no you don’t.
- Don’t put too much pressure on yourself and remember what Christmas is really about – spending time with those who appreciate you the most.
Don’t forget to enjoy yourself! Whilst training consistently is amazing it’s important to reward yourself now and again – Christmas is a perfectly acceptable time for it.