It’s the end of the year, and the holidays are here. Between the shopping and parties and overall busyness of this joyful season, it’s fair to say that most people are also experiencing more stress these days.
Here are 5 tips from the American Heart Association to help you stay healthy and grounded amidst the holiday hoopla:
1) Go in with a plan. It is unrealistic to expect yourself to maintain your usual health routines at this time of year. Instead, make yourself a pact: “For these three weeks I will get at least 30 minutes of activity per day, I’ll have a reasonably healthy breakfast and lunch and limit the sweets.” Cut yourself some slack to take off some of the pressure. With realistic expectations, you’ll be less likely to fall off track.
2) Beware of party perils. Late nights, salty snacks, sugary sweets and alcohol cause havoc on your health. Poor diets and lack of sleep just add to your stress. Be mindful of these pitfalls, listen to your body and set yourself limits in these situations. If you are a host, serve a heart-healthy menu. Your guests will thank you.
3) Stay active. With all the hustle and bustle of the season, it’s easy to neglect your exercise routine. Sprinkle in healthy behaviors with your daily activities: Park in the back of the parking lot and take the stairs. Take a vigorous walk in the fresh air. Shift your gym visits around your social schedule.
4) But not too active. An overbooked schedule is no fun. Give yourself the gift of peace and don’t be afraid to turn down some invitations. Honor the things in your schedule that are important to you and your health, like exercise and sleep, and don’t let other obligations interfere.
5) Lay out a plan for January, February and beyond. You may get the urge to detox during the holiday binge, but now is not the time to jump full steam into lifestyle changes. It’s a hard time of year to stick with a new routine. Instead, lay out realistic steps for the months ahead. At Mei Fitness, we have a 2-for-1 Couples Special. Give the gift of exercise to your loved one this year, and make 2016 a healthy one for both of you! 800-479-6710