Maintaining Healthy Habits Throughout the Holiday Season
As another year comes to a close and the season of holidays, parties, events, relatives visiting and more is in full swing, eating healthfully, finding time to exercise and maintaining those healthy habits can prove a little more difficult. However, with some proper planning and a little motivation, there is no reason to let the holidays get in the way of healthy habits. Fellowship Square offers the following tips to help seniors — along with their caregivers and loved ones — have a very healthy holiday season!
Plan Ahead — Proper planning offers a solution to nearly any challenge! And that includes eating right and exercising throughout the busy holiday months. Instead of just assuming a workout will fit into a day or weekly routine, plan for it as if it is any other appointment such as a visit to the doctor or meeting up with friends. It’s also helpful to plan ahead when it comes to healthy eating. Have a healthy snack before going to a party or bring a healthy dish to contribute to a holiday meal. Properly fueling the body before a big event or party where there will be unhealthy foods and treats will make it easier to avoid caving into those temptations.
Be Accountable — For many personality types, being accountable to someone (or even something such as a digital tracker, app, smart phone or watch) can be a huge help in staying the course for a healthy lifestyle throughout the holidays. For each individual, finding that person or item that can help him or her stay motivated is essential. And it can be fun! Many trackers have fun “awards” when a goal is made in the area of movement and exercise or calories burned. And having a friend or partner to exercise or walk with or even meal prep together can make getting and staying healthy a social event!
Allow for Indulgences — The holidays are filled with celebrations, parties and get togethers — most of which are centered around food and drink! And there is nothing wrong with indulging a bit and enjoying favorite foods and beverages during this time of revelry. Just make sure the indulgence is really worth it! Setting a limit on holiday goodies can help healthy eaters enjoy their treats guilt free while still maintaining their healthy goals. For example, allow for three Christmas cookies during the course of a week or eat healthy salads and lots of fruits, vegetables and lean proteins for several days prior to a big feast such as Thanksgiving or Christmas dinner. The key is to fully enjoy it, don’t feel guilty about it and then return to healthy eating after the indulgence.
Finally, don’t give up! After indulging in a few too many treats, a setback (or two or three…) should not deter one from getting back on track. Eating healthy and exercising is a commitment and it can be especially difficult to dedicate oneself to throughout the holiday season that is centered around delicious feasts and treats. The important thing is to move on after a binge or a lack of exercise for a few days, a week… or longer. Get back on track and keep going!