The holidays are here, bringing with them warm hearths, giant family dinners, and stacks on stacks of tasty snacks. With everything that goes on in December, it’s no surprise many people worry about gaining weight and losing energy over the season. Being more healthy is the #1 New Year Resolution most people make (and break) come January. But why wait? Starting your healthy habits a month early can be easy, even during the most tempting time of the year. Here are a few motivational tips for staying healthy through the holidays!
- “An apple a day keeps the doctor away” but not Santa Claus, so don’t worry about scaring him off. Just because he favors cookies over kale doesn’t mean you have to follow his example. The natural sugars in fruit like apples and berries will satisfy your seasonal sweet-tooth without compromising the healthy habits you’re trying to maintain. As for those delicious candied apples…you won’t get any coal in your stocking for it, but use your judgment when it comes to adding on the extra sugar.
- “Push it to the limit” while shopping, but not with your credit card. Turn the hustle of holiday shopping into a workout. Annoyed by the lack of parking? Strategically park further away so you can walk the distance. Overcrowded escalators? Take the stairs! Too many shopping bags to lug around? Looks like arm day came early this year! Take the long way around the mall to simultaneously avoid the food court and log in a few extra steps.
- “Taste the Rainbow” by challenging yourself to include a variety of colored fruits and veggies in your holiday feast. If your family is anything like mine, your Thanksgiving dinner probably looked like a delicious pile of beige colored carbs. Add a little more color to your next holiday dinner with some crisp green beans, roasted carrots, and fresh tomatoes. Get creative and try to find something for every color of the rainbow (bonus points if you get something blue!)
- “Walk it off” after your holiday feast and before the desserts and drinks start to flow. Rather than succumbing to the inevitable food coma right away, go for a quick family hike around the neighborhood and bask in all the holiday lights and decorations. By the time you get back home you’ll be ready to sit by the fire and sip on a hot drink without feeling guilty for overindulging.
- “Whistle while you work” is a lot harder to do with your mouth full. Instead of bonding over making tasty treats like candy and holiday cookies, engage in some non-edible crafting with your family. There are tons of ideas online for fun, easy holiday crafting projects you can turn into gifts as well, but my favorite family tradition is decorating tree baubles and hanging them up each year. To this day we still decorate our tree with baubles my sisters and I made when we were itty bitty. So break out the glitter and ribbons and get festive instead of feasty!