Not Your Typical Holiday Survival Guide!
Can you believe it? Christmas is just a few more days away and that means food stress for many. I used to be a food stresser over the holidays and guess what would happen--I’d eat a ton and feel guilty about it. Eating on Christmas wasn’t enjoyable because I was way to worried about gaining weight or becoming unhealthy because If I enjoyed some sugary treats, I was destined for a life of illness. Isn’t that the word going around these days?
I have a secret. It’s not food that’s the enemy, it’s our mindset. We put too way much into food. We give it too much power. Another secret--I freaking love food, I no longer stress and I’m happier than EVER!!
So, this isn’t the typical blog about how to not to over eat--that sets us up to stress out about it even more. What I’m going to tell you about is how to enjoy Christmas in a stress free way that will make you feel good later, not running to the nearest gym to burn off all of those extra calories.
Food is meant to be enjoyed (yep, I’m a personal trainer and nutrition coach and I just said that !). We have been celebrating with food for thousands of years and I don’t know a single religion or culture who doesn’t celebrate something with a big feast. We’re human and we LOVE to eat!
In my professional opinion there is no need to stress about holiday eating. It’s only a few days. After all, aren’t you working on your healthy habits for the majority of the year? It’s the majority of the year that counts, so don’t let a one-off get you down.
This is my daughter's first christmas and the first time my son really understands what it’s all about and I couldn’t be more excited so I’ll probably eat a few cookies, tarts and chocolates. Seeing that I can’t drink, I’m replacing wine with sweets ha!
However, I also want to give you a few tips on how to plan your holidays so that you don’t have to feel like you have to go to the opposite extreme come January 1st.
Don’t Plan On Food Restriction Around The Holidays:
This mindset WILL set you up to fail. It’s too much pressure to put on yourself and the temptation will be multiplied by a 100,000,000,00. Seriously! With all of the holiday parties, family gatherings and stress, your willpower will go into overdrive and it’s likely that you will overindulge, then feel guilt.
Don’t make dieting or fitness a New Year's Resolution:
Did you know that gyms, fitness classes, workout dvd’s and supplement sales are HUGE business, especially after the holidays? Did you know that 60 percent of people who join a gym lose interest in the first 6 weeks only to never show again but continue to pay at least $40 every month for their contract. Yep! I worked with tons of women back in my gym days and they swore that they didn’t need a trainer to help them stay accountable. Guess what? After finishing up their starter packs or consultations, I would never see them again. It’s a sad sight when you see a gym packed of new members only to see the gym empty after a few short weeks.
If You’re Going To Enjoy a Few Drinks, Eat First:
A mistake made by many (myself back in the day!). Starving yourself so that you can make up those calories in liquid is only going to set you up to overeat and drunken eating is like a marathon! A messy, no inhibition marathon.
It’s Okay to Indulge:
Like that tart staring you in the face? Is it calling your name? Indulge and have that tart. Enjoying your favourite foods because they’re your favorite foods is perfectly fine. If you don’t see your favs at the dessert table, then skip and move on.
Go Overboard? Move On:
It happens and we all do it but getting stressed isn’t going to help matters any. Stressing out will make you feel guilt and shame. It’s those feelings that lead us to then go on these insanely restrictive diets or crazy expensive nutrition plans because we want to rid ourselves of guilt and shame.
Unfortunately, our society has put all of this pressure on us. WE put this pressure on us. There is going to be a ton of crap in the New Year targeting those who now feel this guilt and shame, promising health, telling them that they have to cleanse their souls and that their fitness and nutrition has everything they need, they just have to cut out every single food group and eat perfectly clean. Again, unrealistic and setting people up to fail while raking in tons of cash.
There is no need to punish yourself. Just pick up where you left off and move on.
Love your baby body,
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