Staying Healthy in the Holiday Home Stretch
During the holiday season, we are reminded of what matters most in life. Family and friends take center stage, our calendars fill with parties and travel, a few months pass and just like that it’s a new year and unfortunately, maybe a bigger pant size! We all have good intentions to stay active and healthy through the holidays, but how do we stay on track while we enjoy ourselves? Holidays are a time to continue making healthy decisions just as you may have done throughout the year. Even though we are in the home stretch of the holiday season, it is not too late to make healthy choices so you can start 2017 off right.
Goal setting is a bit more intimidating around the holidays, routines change and the season can affect how we prepare our meals and exercise. Set out to make two to three small changes, assessing these at the end of the week. Specific goals like drinking two water bottles before noon, adding spinach to one of your meals, or scheduling four, 30-minute walks are all measurable. When you can control what is being put on your plate, try filling half of your plate with non-starchy vegetables like leafy greens so you become full quickly and eat less. Rather than sacrificing the flavor with dishes, reduce your portions. Instead of fearing foods, savor each bite, and allow yourself to eat until you’re comfortably full. Making activity fit into your life can be easy too, walking with family or fitting in a quick 20-minute workout at home is all you need. Extreme restrictions to your diet or strict exercise routines are not needed in order to improve your health. Stick with flexible and realistic plans so you’re happy with your efforts and can maintain a balance around the holidays.