by Dr. Amy Sullivan, DPT, OCS
Everybody tries to start off the new year with better habits, including eating healthier and starting a new exercise routine, but why wait until the New Year to start your resolution? Holiday eats and sweets are always tough to pass up and it can be easy to say you'll just start your diet after the holidays, but don’t let those sweets take over. Here are some of my tips on staying fit around the holidays while still enjoying the occasional treat.
Make sure your plate has at least three colors. Veggies will fill you up with way fewer calories than those starches. That doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy the occasional starch, just be sure to limit yourself and focus on those greens!
Try to avoid having more than one dessert by checking out all the deserts and picking your favorite. Instead of eating the biggest piece of cake you can find, go for a small one, you can share it with a friend while still satisfying your sweet tooth.
Don’t forget to make time for exercise. Try to set aside at least 30 minutes per day to move, whether that’s an intense workout or a walk around the block. Not a fan of the winter? Think about taking up some new outdoor hobbies including snowshoeing, snowboarding, and cross-country skiing. These are ways to burn calories while having fun and enjoying the changing seasons!
Set SMART goals. Specific: What exactly do you want to achieve? Measurable: Identify exactly what it is you will see. Achievable: Investigate whether the goal really is acceptable to you. Realistic: can you reach your goal? Timely: Make a tentative plan of everything you do.
Below are some tips on how to help keep the weight off during the holiday season without ending it injured.
Stretch before and after exercising. Stretching out your muscles is the best way to warm up and get your body ready for any form of exercise.
Before using new gym equipment, have someone show you the proper way to perform an exercise to help avoid an injury. If you're new to a gym then have someone give you a tour and show you some machinery that may be good for you to start with. Trying out a new exercise class? Have your instructor show you modifications of exercises to avoid injury.
Take extra caution while running on the roads during the winter, black ice can be dangerous!