Christmas is rapidly approaching, and a lot of people are anticipating ruining their diets and fitness regimes over the festive period. In fact, research shows that with the extra calories consumed across all the celebrations during Christmas, we can gain on average around 1kg!
Excessive eating is thought to be the main cause of additional weight gain, but it is also due to lack of physical activity and exercise. And although it’s important to indulge and enjoy ourselves, it is equally important to not over-indulge.
So, to help you feel less guilty this Christmas, we’ve put together a list of our top 5 tips to staying fit over the holiday season.
Go for a walk
Make the most of your family time by going for a Christmas day walk. Gyms are often closed over the bank holiday so compensating with a walk is a great way to stay moving. Plus, did you know that walking after eating is a great way to help aid digestion? Over the years, researchers have found that a post-meal walk, as short as 15 minutes, can in fact help with digestion and improve blood sugar levels.
2. Set realistic goals
To avoid feeling disappointed, aim for a minimum of half an hour per day to exercise. Whether it’s a stroll to the shops, a digital workout from home or continuing to hit the gym, any exercise is good exercise! If you plan too much and don’t achieve it, you will only end up disappointed and discouraged.
3. Focus on areas of fitness you’ve neglected
If you’re normally a heavy lifter, take some time to focus on yoga and stretching. Usually a cardio fanatic? Set some time aside to do an at home bodyweight exercise routine. You can even write down your new year’s fitness goals and share the fitness cheer with friends and family.
4. Drink in moderation
It is best to regulate your drinking since alcohol, fizzy drinks or sugary juices will only add more calories to the ones you already eaten. Swapping unnecessary calorific drinks for water or sugar free options is a great way to stay hydrated and hangover free! If you do think you might over-indulge, try the following tips to limit your intake and reduce the effects of a hangover:
- Opting for small amounts of wine or small 125ml glasses. If you fill glasses to the rim, you’ll drink more than you realise.
- Measuring your spirits instead of free pouring them.
- Drink plenty of water before you go to bed and keep more by your bedside, to rehydrate and help reduce the hangover symptoms.
- If you’re out on the town, order a glass of water with every alcoholic drink!
5. Try to get out as much as possible
The festive period is a great opportunity to get out as much as we can! Socialising with friends or family, taking the dog for a walk or even some last-minute Christmas shopping are all things that help keep us moving.
Most importantly, don’t be too hard on yourself! Taking some time off allows your body and mind to recover from a year of hard work. Remember that progress is never linear, and everyone needs a break to get ready for the next challenge!