December is here, bringing a flurry of exciting and challenging moments.
This season is loaded with holiday parties, festive music, delicious foods, family time, gifts and vacation.
But it's also a stressful time for many. A lack of routine, difficult weather and financial obligations are just some the obstacles headed our way.
Routines like our diet and fitness plans are likely the first things to be disrupted, but I've provided some realistic and simple tips below to help maintain your goals and kick Decembers butt!
Helpful tips for keeping up with your exercise routine:
1. Starting with the easiest... take a look at your weekly calendar and mark in your fitness classes now.
2. If you have holiday parties in the evening that conflict with your gym time, try hitting up a studio first thing in the morning for a change. This can give you an opportunity to experience a new workout class and teacher!
3. Make yourself accountable for showing up to your fitness class. How? Plan to workout with a friend, or sign up ahead of time for classes.
4. If you’re going to be travelling, do a Google search of nearby fitness studios and make that activity part of your itinerary.
5. Stream your workouts online! This is great if you're out of town and are forced to workout in a hotel room or a family member's home.
Helpful tips for managing your diet this month:
1. Stay hydrated. Elementary, I know. But it's especially important during a season that is full of parties and post-work drinks. Everybody is different, but a cup of water between cocktails or a glass of wine is an easy ratio to follow. It will also help with avoiding excess snacking.
2. If you’re attending after work holiday parties, eating a balanced dinner can become a problem. You might be filling up on unhealthy finger foods, and by the time you get home it's likely too late to start cooking (leading us to grab a bowl of cereal or takeout... or is that just me?). If you have the prep time, try eating a filling lunch packed with healthy fats and proteins. Also, bring yourself a little healthy snack to have before heading out from work (perhaps a small greek yoghurt and top it off with mixed nuts and/or fruit).
3. Don’t skip out on breakfast. Breakfast will likely be the easiest meal for you to control, and is least impacted by holiday foods during the work week. Include many healthy grains, fats and proteins in your meal to start your day and metabolism on the right track! Here are some ideas: steel cut oats, overnight oats, chia pudding, yoghurt with granola and fruit, and avocado toast.
4. Most importantly, don’t put so much pressure on your diet. Part of taking care of yourself means enjoying the little things. So don't be afraid to indulge in fancy appetizers, delicious desserts and holiday cocktails from time to time.
Try out some of these tips and let me know what you think in the comments below. Remember, maintaining a little bit of routine will leave you feeling happier, and will provide you with the mental confidence to take on your New Year's resolutions!