It seems like a common thread in fitness blogs this time of year is regarding “surviving” the holidays. For the reasons of standard family drama like politics at the Thanksgiving dinner table and that family member that drinks just a tad too much hard egg nog — survival might be the correct term. But for most folks, and hopefully you’ll include yourself in this crowd, it should be about making time to connect with friends and family.
At CFJ, our philosophy is that the best version of our athletes is one that includes and takes care of 4 different categories – Nutrition, Exercise, Stress Management, and Connection. We believe that the best way to thrive is to attend to all 4 of these ideas, knowing that each of them will ebb and flow but never neglecting any of them completely
Nutrition. This is certainly one of the harder aspects of the holidays but perhaps this is the season of moderation in terms of your diet. Enjoy some indulgences but make them as high of quality as you can. You’d like pie on thanksgiving, learn to make it! I had a member talk to me the other day about learning to make his own yogurt with his new Instant Pot. He is an accomplished cook (I have had the pleasure of figuring that out first hand 🙂 and while he appreciates the finer things in life, one thing that I love is that he tends to always make those things himself – breads, desserts, etc. Treat foods are nearly always better when you make them yourself, fewer ingredients/processing/etc.
Exercise. We have you covered here, all you have to do is show up. Front load your weeks with exercise before your social calendar gets ramped up. If you can get 2-3 workouts by Wednesday each week, you are less likely to be negatively affected by a busy weekend, etc. On Sundays, you might consider sitting down and looking at your work week and booking your classes ahead of time, this will help you hedge your bet against work or life getting hectic. Avoid being reactive to life, it will always fill the gaps with something that probably doesn’t look like exercise!
Stress Management. Work is a big part of our lives one way or another, do your best to embrace the good things about working hard (sense of accomplishment, developing a work ethic that helps you in all areas, etc) but try to minimize the detrimental aspects of work, namely added stress. I think the holidays can be tricky for the hard chargers out there because you may find yourself resenting work when you are there the day after thanksgiving, working weekends or late nights, etc. Really take a long hard look at your scenario – is this something that your employer is requiring or are you putting that pressure on yourself to burn the candle at both ends? If the latter, start implementing some changes to protect yourself, a resentful employee isn’t good for anyone.
Connection. If good for anything, the holidays and subsequent new year give us time for reflection. Perhaps you’ve lost touch with a friend or family member that you used to be close to, reach out! Create a new holiday tradition this year, something that everyone can participate in and look forward to for next year. Smile at a stranger, you never know where it might take you. Work hard and be satisfied with the job you have done.
So as we head into the holiday season, take a look at these four areas of life and set yourself up for success. Don’t “survive” the holidays….we only have so many trips around the fun, enjoy them. If you’d like some help getting a routine established, let us know how we can help! Email us today to set up a free intro appointment. [email protected]