The holiday season has arrived, and with it comes all the excitement that envelops our lives. When pumpkins have been joined by turkeys, we know we are there, and it doesn’t stop until after the New Year's Day festivities. It is weeks of nonstop celebrating that comes with candy, cocktails, turkey, stuffing, pies, more turkey, more cocktails, more of everything tempting to effect our health and our weight.
As the season starts to pick up steam in terms of places to go and people to see and all of the celebrations that go along with those events, it can be easy to fall into the trap of feeling stressed out and unhealthy. Fight the urge to cave into holiday bad habits! I am following the steps listed below, and I want to share them with you. Follow these steps and you're sure to feel healthy and happy all the way until the ball drops New Year’s Eve.
1) Eat healthy and savor the seasonal treats.
I mostly try to stick to my normal eating habits, although it is not always easy. Just because it’s the holidays doesn’t mean I need to eat everything. At the same time, I’m not willing to deprive myself. I stick with the treats that are special to this time of year. I can have a chocolate chip cookie any day of the year, but it’s not often that I get pumpkin pie or pecan pie or gingerbread lattes. When I taste those once-a-year goodies, I take the time to savor each moment. It’s not about restricting; it’s about making choices.
2) Be conscious of mindful eating.
There is an obscene amount of food surrounding us at this time of year. It can be very easy to start munching on a handful here and a handful there without really thinking about what we’re eating, or if we’re even hungry or truly want that food. That's when the weight gain can start. Before I grab that dessert or go for the second serving, I stop and take a second to think about my actions. There’s nothing wrong with eating that sweet treat, but think about it first.
3) Exercise as often as possible.
My motivation and time to exercise stays steady during the holiday season. Because it is such an ingrained and important regular part of my day, I won’t miss it. I make an effort to get to the gym, even if it is for a short workout. I believe something is better than nothing and my body agrees. I don’t hesitate to park farther away from stores to get in those extra steps, and with Amazon shopping at our fingertips making sitting a regular non-movement, moving around the house as much as possible helps. Find ways to keep moving and get that exercise in.
4) Keep sleep a priority.
The holidays can be exhausting, and that’s a big part of why people get so stressed out and unhappy. I make an effort to stick to my usual 7-8 hours of sleep because I know that when I’m well rested, I’m much happier and ready to take on the fun of the holidays.
Tip: I take a USANA Pure Rest every night. It’s a high quality melatonin that gives me the deep sleep we all need for restoration.
5) Make some ‘me’ time every day.
I think it’s healthy to take some downtime every day, or as close to it as possible. Because I have a high level of energy, my downtime usually comes in the evening. My favorite sources of “me” time are watching a sunset at the beach, relaxing with a friend and a glass of wine, watching a favorite TV show, or reading for 30 minutes before bed. Having time to just be quiet is restorative and healing when the holidays keep us moving at a pace faster than normal.
6) Remember that things don’t have to be perfect.
I make a point to remember that I’m the one who decides what’s 100% OK when it comes to decorating for the holidays, having guests over, or cookie baking projects. Perfection is not the goal. This is the time to enjoy the season and all the joy that goes with it. The decorations will be great, the food will be delicious, the cookies will be adorable, and everyone will be happy because it’s the thought behind the effort that counts.
It’s particularly easy to get dehydrated when the holiday drinks start flowing. It’s good to set a goal of how much water for the day and get as close to that as possible. When you’re having alcoholic beverages, drink responsibly first and foremost, and have one glass of water for every drink. Watch it with those eggnogs, as delicious as they are, because they can add some real calories!
8) Remember: I don’t have to do everything!
Remember that events and parties can be like shiny objects. We want them all! Make an effort to prioritize the important invitations and know that it’s okay to say no to some of them to keep your stress and sanity in check.
At the end of the day, this is such a fun and wonderful time of year. It can be easy to become so caught up in everything that we forget to stop and enjoy the season. It is a magical time and worth treasuring every moment. When the New Year arrives, I want to look back and know that I mostly maintained my routine of staying healthy with clean eating, regular supplements, exercise, sleep and quiet reflection, while still enjoying life during the holidays. I’ll be ready to start the New Year with vitality and anticipation! I wish the same for you.
My favorite products that help me stay on track are available here in my shop. Take a look around!
If you have questions, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. I can help you find the solutions for your specific needs. May the magic of the holidays light up your heart!
Live and love your life with vitality!