It’s that time of year– we’re in the thick of holiday parties. Like anyone else, I look forward to these parties (and the bounty of yummy treats that go with them). But how can you still make merry without sabotaging your fitness plan?
1. Have a fitness plan! Schedule your workouts for the week each weekend. If you’re an outdoor exerciser, take a look at the weather forecast so you can plan accordingly. Study your calendar for all of those school performances, parent nights, and all of the other special events that have inserted themselves into your regular routine. Then block out the time for your workouts, so that you know you’ll have positive energy going for you.
2. Have an idea of what your favorite treats will ‘cost’ you. Using a calorie calculator, you’ll give yourself a good idea of how many calories you’ll eat by noshing on all those party treats. Go one step further and figure out what kind of exercise you’ll need to do to burn those calories by using an activity calculator.
3. Eat before you party. After doing your calculations, you’re likely motivated to limit your party food intake. The best way to make sure you don’t overdo it is to fill up on healthy food (carrots, celery, brown rice and beans) before you head to the party. Not only will you not eat as many calories, but you’ll have more time to focus on chatting with friends– which is the real focus of the party anyway.
4. Set a One Drink limit. I must admit that, as a nondrinker, this one is easy for me. But I fully recognize it isn’t so easy for others. But once you know how many calories are in your favorite lovely beverage, suddenly sparkling water with a twist of citrus (or festive pomegranate or cranberry juice) may seem quite appealing. Also, by setting a one drink limit you’re creating a greater likelihood of sticking with your fitness plan and not getting sidetracked thanks to a hangover or dehydration.
5. Focus on the Positives. By turning the focus of the party to your friends and socializing (and away from food and drink), you can share your wellness triumphs with those who care about you. They will likely want to know about your positive life changes, so feel the pride and confidently tell them about the healthy, happy new you. That kind of feeling can’t be recreated, not even from the best magnum of champagne and sweetest treat in the world.
Now go on out there and enjoy yourself!