We all love grandma’s recipes and some of us wait all year to have the opportunity to prepare and share these special dishes. If you are the one doing the cooking, you may want to consider substitution. Use ingredients that are more natural, organic, and better for you. You can make your own powdered sugar, use unbleached/wheat/quinoa flours, and add more nutrient dense options like fresh fruits and vegetables. Maybe there is even room to add a new healthy dish and have it take hold as part of your family’s tradition.
2 – Ditch the stress and guilt.
It’s the holidays! Get to your happy place and stay there. Come to terms with the fact that you may be eating outside of your norm and that things may not go as planned. There are too many moving parts you can’t control and that’s okay. If you maintain your base food group of whole and real foods, don’t overindulge and share a piece of pie – or at least don’t eat two, it will all work out.
Don’t forget to snack. This doesn’t mean a constant graze of all foods. Remember your body needs fuel on a regular basis – good, pure fuel. Don’t get so busy that the only food you consume is a large meal at the end of the day. Get your breakfast in and try to squeeze in a morning snack (piece of fruit, nuts, oats, yogurt; some protein could benefit your metabolism, too).
Remember to stop eating before you are full. Be cognizant about the food going into your mouth and take time to enjoy each bite.
3 – Work in your work out.
Timing is key. There are family and friends, holiday parties, office gatherings, gift swaps, kids events and so much more. It is easy for the part of the day that you typically get to exercise to get eliminated. The idea here is to think in terms of small blocks of time. Push in 2 sets of 10 squats while you are working in the kitchen. Do some calf raises while waiting in line or watching football. Stretch and breathe anytime you’ve got 5 minutes. Add a few of these throughout the day and you’ll keep your body moving without having to leave the holiday prep and festivities.
If you are considering a change in lifestyle, eating habits, or exercise program, it doesn’t have to wait until the New Year. Everyday’s a new beginning and the opportunity to be a better you. The key is to make it as easy as possible for you to have a ‘win’ every day. You deserve to be the best version of you for yourself, your family, and your future. Happy Holidays!