Everyone has heard of hibernating during the winter months, but this shouldn’t apply to your fitness plan. Even though we aren’t getting snowy weather here in Kailua, we know that sometimes the winter months act as damper to our fitness goals. With rainy weather, not as many bikinis, and the holidays; it’s easy to skip the gym or forget about it all together. To avoid having to over-exercise in the spring in order to catch up, here are some goals on how to stay focused this holiday season.
One of the best ways to make sure you aren’t missing the gym is to always plan on going. Write it on every calendar (including your phone) that you’re going to the gym at 4:00pm every day so that you’re getting constant reminders of your plans. Pack your gym bag at night before you go to bed and leave it at the door for you to take in the morning. You are less likely to “forget” about the gym if you are consciously planning on it all day. Another great planning technique is to plan your favorite workouts for certain days. If you love leg/glute day, plan it on Monday when it may be the hardest to get to the gym. By the time you’ve worked out all your individual muscles, it will be Friday!
November and December are some of the slowest months of the year for gyms (with January being the busiest). Take advantage of this and plan workouts on machines that are usually available during those high traffic months at the gym! Join fitness classes or head over to Core Power Yoga in Kailua for some workouts that you haven’t been able to get in on before!
Wake up early and work hard. One of the best ways to assure you’re burning your calories each day is to get up and do it first thing in the morning. The holiday season is filled with eating and socializing with friends. If you’re worried about missing out on some holiday festivities, get up an hour and a half early and head to the gym to get your workout over with. This gives you your whole day to still be involved in all of the fun! It can be a win-win as sometimes leaving to go home earlier in the night to get to bed can save you 100’s of calories in unnecessary late night eating and drinking!
One of the biggest calorie culprits over the holidays are desserts and drinks. One of the best things you can do over the course of your Christmas parties and holiday get togethers is to portion control your beverages. Some holiday drinks such as eggnog and homemade hot chocolate can have as much as 400 calories and 20 grams of sugar per cup! Remember this when you’re at holiday parties. If you find yourself indulging in some sweet foods, skip the sweet drinks and vice versa.
In the winter, it’s easier to wear cold weather clothes that aren’t as tight fitting as summer clothes. Since we live on Oahu, remember that all of the seasons are bikini season. By flaunting your figure a little bit in a holiday outfit, you won’t have all that “wiggle room” to eat extra goodies at holiday parties. Getting used to wearing bigger winter clothes can lead to unwanted weight gain that you don’t even know is happening!
Eating healthy during the holidays is an anomaly. One of the hardest parts about sticking to healthy eating is peer pressure. One of the most common things you hear from your friends and family on Thanksgiving and Christmas is “it’s only one day out of the year, I think you’ll be fine.” This has happened to everyone, and even if you don’t even WANT a piece of your Auntie’s 6 Layer Chocolate Cheesecake, you end up eating a piece or two – just so everyone will stop grumbling about it.
“If you plan to use the “Iron Will” approach, here are some key phrases you can use to excuse yourself politely from eating things you don’t choose to eat:
The Crafty Dismissal: “Ooh, that looks delicious! I’m stuffed so I’ll just have to take it home for later.” (Then store it in your freezer ‘til graduation, pitch it in the dumpster, give it to your dog…)
The Firm Hand: “Thank you for respecting the fact that I have some personal goals I am working on and, while that looks delicious, it would compromise my goals so I’ll have to wait. Thanks!”
The Medical Excuse: “My doctor recently told me I am pre-diabetic. I really have to watch out for foods that spike my insulin. I’ll have to pass.” Guess what?! If you’re overweight, you really are pre-diabetic.
The Allergy Excuse: “I recently found out I am violently allergic to that! No thanks!” I have used this many times and it works!! The one question you might get is, “Wow, what happens when you eat it?” and your response can be as simple as this. “You don’t even wanna know!” That’ll stop the conversation right there.”
Hopefully you can use some of these workout tips along with some great clean eating tips from our friends over at OSR Weight Management to stay on track with your fitness during these holiday/winter months! Here at Oahu Spine & Rehab we are invested in your total body health. Our integrated health center can help you improve your body’s daily function as well as work on any pain that you may have.