9 Simple Secrets for a Fitter and Healthier Christmas
Christmas, the most wonderful time of the year is on its way. It is the time of being together, time of warmth, love and happiness. But, it is also the time of the year people tend to forget about their waistline, liver and stress levels. The year ends with tons of food, gallons of all kinds of drinks and tempting desserts of all colours of the rainbow, tastes and textures. And then comes January. It’s time to wake up with a huge hungover, and a sense of guilt. It is time to go back to normal. Ready to dive into whatever gym or any weight loss fitness program available out there hopelessly trying to regain a bit of energy and some self-confidence. But, it doesn’t have to go that way. Not necessarily. You can choose to have a healthy Christmas too.
1. Keep your workout goals realistic
So, imagine it’s the end of the year already. You are having a good time with your loved ones. Today is the day to enjoy yourself and enjoy life. Tomorrow, well from tomorrow you will go to the gym and you will sweat out all the guilty pleasures from the past days. You will get back on track as soon as possible and the gym will become your second home. “From 1st of January, I will do a workout every day. I will stop drinking alcohol. I will…..I will…”. Does this sound familiar?
Well, you know you will not. So, stop fooling yourself and get realistic goals on your way to a healthy Christmas. Start small, but be consistent. Try to go to the gym at least twice a week, or maybe three times, but stay focused and don’t give up.
2. Get a workout buddy
A workout buddy will help you keep going and to make best out of this healthy Christmas. There are sometimes rough days and at the end of such a day you just want to relax, just do nothing. The last thing you are looking forward to after you have been working hard all day is to have to go somewhere where you intend to sweat and work even harder. A workout buddy will pull you out of your hibernate mode and will motivate you to go and sweat together. Just ask a good friend or a neighbour to go to the gym together with you. Or maybe you have some good contacts at the gym already. And you know what? You will be grateful to your buddy in the end. Also after the Christmas holidays.
3. Be flexible
Another hack you could try is to be flexible during your healthy Christmas holidays. You don’t really have to commit yourself to go every time to the gym to exercise. It is the perfect time to take your workout to the living room with a free YouTube workout video for instance. There are also enough other creative solutions when it comes to exercising at home.
4. Go for lower-calorie alternative drinks during your healthy Christmas
Being busy socialising during the festive season the last thing you are thinking off is about how much sugar or how many calories do your favourite drinks contain. But, as a matter of fact, alcohol does contain a lot of sugar and consequently calories. So, while staying hydrated is important at all times, be mindful that your body needs about one hour to digest every unit of alcohol you drink. So, keep an eye on the quantity and on how fast you drink. Try to space it out. Go for lower-calorie alternative drinks.
5. Consider dinner table swaps
Christmas is the time when traditions come to life. Every country has its own Christmas traditions. Even every family has its own customs. When it comes to the Christmas dinner table you also have your favourite dishes. Oftentimes these are abundant meals with rich taste and tempting flavours. It’s the time of the year you just let go all the diets and stuff. But, you know what? You can keep the damage limited by chosing to have a healthy Christmas. And this is quite easy to do too. Just avoid anything deep-fried, battered or covered in pastry.
6. Don’t scrimp on the veggies
– Sprouts contain lots of important vitamins and minerals. They contain B vitamins, vitamin C, vitamin K, iron and magnesium. Sprouts will give a boost of your energy and help enhance detoxification in the body.
– Broccoli is another heavy lifter when it comes to nutrition dense vegetables. It has the ability to protect the heart from disease-causing oxidative stress by significantly lowering levels of oxidant. It protects from numerous chronic diseases too. Moreover, it is packed with nutrients like vitamin K, vitamin C, folate, manganese and potassium.
– Sweet potatoes are a good alternative for ordinary potatoes. And they are tasty too. They contain fibre, protein and a good amount of vitamin C, vitamin B6, potassium and manganese. They are vitamin A dense vegetable. One potato covers 438 % of your daily vitamin A need.
– Green Peas is another green friend nature has gifted us with. It is incredibly nutritious and contains a large amount of fibre, protein and vitamins A, C and K, riboflavin, thiamin, niacin and folate. Peas support digestive health by enhancing the beneficial bacteria in your gut and promoting regular bowel movements.
All of these veggies and many others you can perfectly put to work for you and present them on your healthy Christmas dinner table.
7. Pimp your potatoes
Roasted potatoes are often guest at the table when it comes to dinner. They are a good source of potassium, vitamin C and fibre. Wash the potatoes well, leave the skins on, slice them, sprinkle a bit of olive oil and some herbs, and then let them bake for about half an hour in the oven. They will look delicious and will be crispy on the outside with a fluffy centre. Sweet potatoes are a good alternative too.
You could roast some beetroot, carrots and parsnip slices too. It will add more colour and taste to your plate.
8. DIY sauce
Make your own cranberry or other sauce to avoid pre-packaged versions high in added sugar and other unnecessary additives.
9. Don’t run on chocolate only
It’s easy to forget your daily routine while sleeping out and unwrapping the presents. Still, skipping breakfast is not such a good idea, even during the holidays. According to researchers that people who skip breakfast are more tempted to go for unhealthy bites during the day. So if you don’t want to go in for seconds or thirds at the Christmas dinner table just don’t let go your morning bowl of porridge or avocado toast.
I hope you find these tips useful. For sure you have also your own Christmas hacks and I will be very happy if you want to share these with me.