This is the time of year when everyone’s social calendars seem to fill up. The buffet plates also fill – and so the waistband might become a bit tighter. Let’s not let that happen! We’ve got helpful holiday reminders you can use all year long.

  • Be smoke-free. Enough said.
  • Combine family with activity. Go cut your own tree. Take toboggan rides on a weekend day. When shopping – park FAR away from the door. Not everyone likes sledding or skating, but everyone can go and at least watch the active ones!
  • Eat healthy, and be active. Don’t blow off your healthy eating and exercise habits for the holidays. Keep it up! Instead of trying to squeeze in some time for fitness – squeeze something out of your schedule so you still have time for fitness. It’s OK to say no.
  • Get check-ups and vaccinations. It’s cold and flu season and a good time for flu shots or other vaccinations which may be needed. Check with your doctor to see what you may be missing.
  • Give the gift of relaxation. Can you think of the stress that can be released with a massage? Give one or get one. Your partner will thank you.
  • Handle and prepare food safely. Sometimes food is served and then sits out on a table for a while. This is especially dangerous with turkey. Keep hot food hot and cold food cold.  
  • Manage stress. Take time for yourself. For some – this could be a bubble bath or a manicure. For others it could be a walk in the woods or a few rounds of bowling. Do what works for you.
  • Prevent injuries. In the hustle and bustle of the holiday season, don’t forget to be safe. That means helmets when skiing, seatbelts when driving, hydration when exercising and safety gear for any sport.
  • Stay warm. Sometimes you think you’re just popping out for a quick errand, but a car could break down. You could run out of gas. Make sure you have weather-appropriate clothing at all times. If you don’t have it on your body – you should at minimum have it in your car, truck or backpack.
  • Travel safely. Even warmer climates can have icy roads in the winter. Leave early enough for your appointments so you don’t have to rush and speed. Keep the tank full. When traveling on mass transit, watch so that scarves don’t get caught in sliding doors. Alert travel is safe travel.
  • Walk in the sunshine. It stimulates the production of feel-good serotonin and also helps relieve seasonal affective disorder (SAD), which impacts millions of Americans every year. When the days are shorter you’ll need to make an effort to grab the sunshine when you can.
  • Wash your hands often. When you’re at the gym, wash your hands before AND after grabbing those weights and handlebars. You’re less likely to spread illness – or catch something.

Let’s assume you’re on a roll prior to the holidays. You’re exercising and eating right. Remember that every calorie burned cancels a calorie ingested. Here’s how to keep the momentum going:
  • Make exercise a non-negotiable priority
  • Strength train twice per week
  • Cardio twice per week
  • Surprise seasonal exercise once per week (Ice skating? Snowboarding? Half-marathon?)
  • Wear your pedometer or fitness bracelet so you don’t forget to work on your 10,000 steps per day.
  • Get adequate rest and sleep.
  • Hydrate! Remember that caffeine is a diuretic and alcohol can dehydrate your body. Choose water.
  • When at a party – be the life of it! Do more talking than drinking or start the action on the dance floor.


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