1) Plan Ahead: Going out of town for the holidays? Plan ahead and see if where you’re headed has a gym close to your hotel, parents’ place, etc. Do they have a punch card, a drop-in? It will be harder to get off track if you know where you’ll be working out while away.
2) Get Creative: Use furniture and other items at home (ie: your kids, but be careful!) to get some workouts in. What about rocks and other objects outside? Get creative! You can still do a lot with a well-planned bodyweight workout.
3) Do Something Different: Chances are if you’re a gym rat like me, you rarely make time outside of your training program to try new things. Haven’t skated in awhile? Take the time to go to the rink with your kids. Go skiing or snowshoeing, seasonal sports are a great way to breathe some new life in your fitness regime.
4) Have Fun, Go Play! Now’s the time to go tobogganing with your kids, build a snowman, make snow angels. Not surprisingly, the more you enjoy something, the more benefit it will have for you, not just physically, but emotionally too. For an extra challenge, drag your kids up the hill in their toboggan, a real live sled pull!
5) Commit to Training Every Other Day: At least. I know it’s going to be tough, but make time. Take time to relax and have fun with your family, but if you have to train earlier than usual, or sneak out for a workout, or do one at home, don’t lose all of your hard work over the year in a few short weeks.
6) Lots of Water: With all of the chaos of the holidays- shopping, decorations, baking, families, Christmas parties- I know, the list is long, it’s hard to stay on top of your diet and hydration. Focus on something small like making sure you get enough water in. In the very least you won’t as dehydrated if you indulge in a few staff party cocktails.
7) Speaking of Diet: The holidays are great for family time… and excess, not only in gifts, but in calorie laden treats and drinks (eggnog anyone?) If you’re going to have a treat, pick one, and make it your . Love your Mom’s lemon squares? Save up for one of those. Can’t live without a rum and eggnog, enjoy every sip!
8) If It Was Easy…: You know the rest of the saying- We all would do it. I’m not trying to be the Grinch here, I know how delicious those Nanaimo bars taste. But being dedicated to your training takes discipline and commitment all year round, not just with your training, but also in the kitchen. You’re going to have to make some choices if you want to stay on track.
9) Get Some Extra Zzz’s: There will be some late night parties, but take advantage of the holidays to sleep in and relax. Chances are you live and die by your alarm clock during the work week, so turn it off if you can, laze in bed with your spouse and kids. Hard training and gains needs good sleep for recovery.
10) It’s Okay if You Mess Up: Okay, so last night’s staff party got a little crazy. You had more than that one rum and eggnog you allotted yourself, and may have crushed about 10 butter tarts. And you’ve missed the last 3 days of training. This doesn’t mean the whole holidays are a loss. Shake it off, get back on the horse, and don’t turn a few bad days into a bad week