Are you trying to stay healthy during the holidays, but afraid you won’t have fun? Then you won’t want to miss these powerful tips for having a FUN and healthy holiday season!
I started SGM because I wanted to bring my love of hosting and entertaining and merge it with my passion for clean eating. I am a big believer that eating well doesn’t have to be BORING. It doesn’t mean you have to skip holiday parties to keep away from temptations. And it also doesn’t mean you have to throw your health goals out the window until the new year begins. Today I’m sharing my tried and true top tips for having FUN this holiday season while maintaining a healthy lifestyle.
1. Plan Ahead
We all get busy during this time of year. It’s easy to get caught up in all of the hustle and bustle and not have time to grocery shop or make dinner. Before you know it you’re feeding your family fast food every night. Take some time to plan for easy healthy meals when you know things are going to be crazy. See my Meal Plan Like A Boss post for some tips.
Meeting friends or coworkers at a restaurant for a holiday party? Go online and check out the menu before you head out the door. This will help you to pre-plan your meal and avoid making impulsive choices once you are at the restaurant.
Tom and I first started doing this when we began eliminating processed food from our diet. It helps us to find restaurants with menu items that fit our lifestyle, and it helps us to make healthy choices when going out with friends.
2. Stay Active
Staying active during the holidays will help to reduce the stress that comes with this time of year. It will give you more energy and will counterbalance some of those extra calories. I don’t know about you, but when I work out, I’m less likely to make unhealthy choices later in the day.
- Start Now – You don’t need to wait until the new year to start a fitness routine. Get moving now and you will be in the groove when the new year begins.
- Change Your Routine – No time to fit in your regular workouts? Rather than do nothing, change things up. Skip the gym and work out from home. Break your workouts up into a few 15-minute sessions. There are a plethora of YouTube videos with short Yoga and bodyweight only workouts.
- Get The Family Involved – Recruit family members to join you! Go for a walk or get a buddy pass to your gym for visiting friends and/or family. The owner of my gym was happy to let my sister work out with me when she was visiting over the summer in exchange for an online review.
This is a big one for me. Although I consistently stick to my nutrition goals, fitness has always been a challenge. I’m either all in or all out! I have been working hard all year on my fitness goals so I will definitely practice what I preach this holiday season!
3. Eat Before The Party
Avoid skipping meals the day of a holiday event. Eating healthy meals throughout your day will help to maintain your blood sugar and prevent you from overeating at the party.
I’m totally guilty of skipping meals when I’m hosting a party. I get so busy with the prep that I don’t make time to eat. I have to make a conscious effort to eat regular meals. I also try to eat a healthy snack an hour or two before attending or hosting a party.
4. Stay Hydrated
Staying hydrated plays a major part in overall health and well-being. It increases energy, improves brain function, promotes weight loss, and keeps you fuller longer. Who doesn’t need all of those things this time of year?!! Stay hydrated this holiday season with my 10 Tips to Increase Water Intake!
5. Bring A Dish To Share
6. Eat Healthy Food First
Choose healthy food first. Get the best of both worlds by eating healthy food first and then having some of the fun food. Be sure to savor every bite! 😉 Healthy and fun can coexist when you are mindful of your choices!
Move away from the food and mingle. When I stand near the food, I tend to unconsciously eat whatever is in front of me while I’m chatting. I’ve learned to move the conversation away from the food.
8. Know Your Limits
Know your limits when it comes to your food choices. I like to ask myself, “How do you I want to feel tomorrow both physically and emotionally? Will I regret this tomorrow?” When you know your limits and are intentional, you are in control of how you feel the next day. (See #9!)
Remember those chips and French onion dip that I mentioned earlier? We don’t get along. I just can’t get enough once I start digging in and will eat all of the chips and the entire bowl of dip. I have to stay away altogether because I know I won’t just have a small amount, and I know my body will definitely not be happy with me if I overeat junk food.
9. Have Fun
I saved the best for last. HAVE FUN! Life is supposed to be fun! If you’ve been around here for a while, you know my 80/20 philosophy. I make healthy choices 80% of the time and FUN choices 20% of the time. Clean eating 100% of the time is not sustainable, at least it isn’t for me.
If I break my 80/20 rule at a holiday party or anytime, I do not beat myself up about it. I make mindful and intentional choices. The important part is to own it and not let those over-the-top fun choices spill into every day of the holiday season and beyond.
I hope these tips help you have a FUN and healthy holiday season with your friends and family!
Do you use any of these tips? Do you have any tips not mentioned that help you to maintain a healthy lifestyle over the holidays? Please share in the comments below.