The holidays are a joyful time that is spent surrounded by loved ones, gifts, and lots of delicious holiday foods! But it can also be one of the most stressful times of the year. There are holiday parties, traveling, and gift shopping, and that's all on top of other important things like your fitness life! This can make it harder for you to stay on track with your fitness goals, or if you've already achieved them, it'll make it harder to stay on track with your routine.
The added stress and business of the holidays force a lot of people to give up their usual routines which can lead to holiday weight gain or even muscle loss for those who have worked hard to build muscle! However, it doesn't have to be this way! There is a way to enjoy the holidays and still stay on track with your fitness... you just need a plan.
Instead of focusing on dieting during the holidays, we'll be giving you healthy holiday eating tips (and workout tips) so you can indulge a little, have fun, and still stay on track with your goals and usual routine!
Ditch the dieting mindset
Our first holiday tip may be a little controversial but hear us out! There's nothing wrong with dieting during the holidays, however, it can lead to restricting and depriving yourself too much when you don't need to. The holidays only come around once a year and a little indulging here and there isn't going to undo all of your hard work, especially if you have developed good habits and discipline.
Now, this doesn't mean you should go crazy during the 2-3 months of holidays. Instead, strike a balance between healthy habits and indulging. Learn how and when to say "no", but also learn that it's okay to say "yes" sometimes. Always saying no to every treat that comes your way will leave you feeling deprived and it can eventually lead to overeating later on.
So, during the holidays, ditch the dieting mindset and the need to eat and work out perfectly. Focus on eating healthy 80% of the time, and indulging 20%, while striving to be consistent in the gym. And if you're wondering how to do that, the tips below will help you find that balance...
Schedule your workouts
This isn't so much a healthy holiday eating tip, but it's an important tip that will help you stay on track – schedule your workouts! As we said before, the holiday season is an extremely busy time for many, and not having a plan or schedule will make it harder for you to stick to your workout routine. In fact, your workout routine will most likely be the first thing you drop if you're not scheduling them.
So, just as you put your holiday parties and family dinners in your calendar, make sure to put down your workout schedule. With the holidays being busier your workout schedule may look a little different, but that's okay! You might have to adjust from your usual 5-day workout split, down to a 3 or 4-day workout split some weeks to adjust to the busier time. The key is to do what works for you during this time. Some movement is better than no movement at all! That means if you can only fit in a 30-minute workout, as opposed to your usual hour or an hour and a half workout then schedule it – it's better than nothing!
Scheduling your workouts will ensure you are making the time for them and that you'll get them done, but remember, don't overdo it. Do what works for your schedule, so schedule them a week at a time.
Plan for parties ahead of time
There are so many gatherings during the holidays! From Halloween parties to Thanksgiving potlucks to Christmas dinners – there's so much going on! When you ditch the dieting mindset you allow yourself the freedom to attend all the gatherings you'd like, but the key to staying on track is to plan ahead.
This doesn't mean you should deviate from your normal routine, like skipping meals before the gatherings. Instead, schedule all the gatherings and parties you plan to attend in the weeks ahead that way when the week of the party comes you can easily plan your meals to fit around the event. Those who are tracking their macros can ensure that they're still hitting their protein, carb, fat, and calorie intake and make any adjustments needed to fit in some treats! You might go a little bit over your macros, but it's better than no tracking at all and going way over your calorie and macronutrient intake. And if you're not tracking your macros, we highly suggest it, even if you don't have a fitness goal to attain! It'll help you stay on track while also helping you visualize everything you eating that way you know that you're getting enough of each macronutrient while still being able to fit in your favorite foods.
This can also include any brunch, lunch, or dinner plans you have with friends during this time! Look at the restaurant's menu ahead of time to plan what you'll be eating. You'll be able to have an estimate of the calories and macros that way you can fit it in with the rest of your day.
Pack healthy snacks when traveling
Traveling is common during the holidays, many people go back home to visit their parents or visit friends. When traveling, be prepared and pack smart. Whether you're going on a long flight or road trip, you'll probably get hungry on the way to your destination so it's best to reduce the temptations you may find on the way. So, pack a few healthy snacks to help! You can pack nuts, a protein bar, trail mix, popcorn, or even pack your favorite protein powder with you!
Remember, it's all about balance. If you want to indulge in your favorite holiday foods while you're away make sure you're staying on track while you're on the road. Another supplement that makes a great addition while you're traveling is super greens! Super greens supplements are a convenient way to get a full day's servings of fruits and veggies to help boost your immune system, gut health, and energy. It will come in handy if you're not getting enough greens while you're away and also help reduce bloating!
Always have a side of veggies with your holiday meals
Most holiday meals tend to be carb-focused and really heavy, like stuffing and mac and cheese. However, it's okay to have a little of everything! If you love mac and cheese then don't skip out on it have a portion of it, with some protein (ham, turkey, etc), and don't forget the veggies! Always load up your plate with some type of greens, like salad or green beans. If you're at a holiday party or potluck, indulge a little in the foods you love, but also make sure to eat any fruits and vegetables that are available to you.
This will ensure that you're still getting some good nutrients in, plus fruits and veggies are packed with fiber which can fill you up and automatically help you keep high-calorie foods to a minimum. Just remember, this isn't about deprivation. You are still able to enjoy the foods you love, just in moderation – so, don't forget to save room for dessert if that's your favorite!
Look for healthier recipes for your favorite holiday foods
Have an upcoming potluck? Or craving your favorite Christmas cookies?
Use this opportunity to try a new recipe! A healthier recipe for your favorite dish or baked goods doesn't mean it won't taste good. Most of the time there are simply a few swaps made to reduce the amount of sugar, fat, or overall calorie intake – but they're still tasty! So, look around for inspiration online and find some new recipes to try! And if you love baking, check out these healthy baking alternatives.
In summary, you don't need to diet during the holidays. The key is to stay on track by focusing on eating mostly nutritious foods and indulging in some of your holiday favorites from time to time. And don't forget to schedule your workouts and plan ahead for any parties or gatherings that you'll be attending!
Who are we?
We're 373 Lab Supplements – nice to meet you! Founded by Iulia Danilova (Fit With Iulia), and with a team filled with fitness enthusiasts, we've worked hard to bring a trustworthy supplement to the market! Supplements that are designed to help you achieve your fitness goals by giving you only the nutrients you need – no unnecessary fillers or additives!
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