With family obligations, traveling, work parties and other distractions that can throw you off track, it's no surprise that staying motivated through the holidays is a challenge. Not to mention it's only getting colder, darker, and windier outside. There are hundreds of excuses that can prevent you from staying on top of your nutrition and fitness regimen. The good news is you aren't destined to gain extra pounds during the holiday season. With these three simple steps you will be able to stay on track and avoid sliding backwards with your health and fitness regimen.
First things first:
- Mindset, aka motivation. "I need the motivation to do this and that and maybe that. Maybe IF I find the motivation ... I need someone to help me find my motivation and kick me in the butt." We treat motivation like it's some sort of come-to-Jesus moment accompanied by a boys choir singing and bright halo coming over our head. But it just isn't. This is not how you find your motivation during the year or the holidays.
Let's break down the word itself: motivation. It's comprised of two parts -- motive (noun) and -ation (suffix). Motive -- something that causes a person to act in a certain way, do a certain thing, etc., incentive; and -ation (suffix) -- indicating an action, process, state, condition, or result. (Dictionary.com)
Before you pray to find the motivation, find your strong "WHY" for you should dedicate yourself to the fitness routine 'tis season. Ask yourself: Why do I want to do stay in shape through the holidays? The word motivation assumes that you have a strong "why" and moves you into action. Think back and remember what happened last year and how it made your feel. Did you gain quite a few pounds and couldn't fit into any of your clothes? Maybe you did really well and were able to rock your hot bod in every holiday picture and at every party. When you know your "why" and have an emotional association with it, skipping gym sessions or binging on holiday treats is out of the question because you can stay focused.
- Schedule your workouts. You should plan all your workouts a week ahead. Treat is as it's an important meeting with yourself, and bosses don't cancel. Now, open your calendar (Gmail, iPhone, paper planner) and if you don't have one, I'll tell you right now, your life is probably a mess and you don't even know about it. Anyway, open your calendar and see where you can pencil in 3-4 works out at 30 minutes at least. Whether you are doing lunges, crunches, squats or whatever in front of TV or killing it at the gym, it's action. Even if you are a beginner, or an experienced athlete, holiday season will have you running around between parties, family dinners and Christmas shopping and you will lose track of your routine. Rather than leaving your schedule up to chance, set aside the time to dedicate the gym and be proactive about it.
- Drop the sugar, sugar. It's cookie season! Chocolate chip, crumbly oatmeal, brownies, Snicker Doodles, butter cookies, eat-me-don't-walk-by-my-mom-made-these-you-must-have-one cookies. Sweets are everywhere during the holidays.
- It's one cookie today, one tomorrow. However, it's not only calories you are wracking up but it's also your hormonal health that may suffer. Ever heard about the sugar crash?
- Let me remind you how it all works, glucose comes from carbohydrate foods. It is the main source of energy used by the body. Insulin is a hormone that helps your body's cells use the glucose. Insulin is produced in the pancreas and released into the blood when the amount of glucose in the blood rises. When your pancreas detects a rush of sugar, it releases a hormone called insulin to deal with all of that excess sugar. Insulin helps regulate that level of sugar in our blood; the more sugar in the blood stream, the more insulin is released. (WebMD, 2014) Insulin helps store all of this glucose in the liver and muscles as glycogen and in fat cells (aka adipocytes stored as triglycerides). Here is the problem: Our body often struggles to find the right balance since we are putting in a large amounts of sugar in our system. When too much insulin is released, blood sugar drops below normal levels (WebMD, 2014) There you have it, sugar crash? What happens next, your body wants to level out the insulin level again so it starts to want more what, SUGAR! You guessed it. What's why you can't just have one cookie...
If you need more help staying motivated and following though with your goals, you can visit www.Sexyfit.com and get a free three-day "Sexy Through The Holidays" e-course. Hope you enjoyed the strategies I showed you here.
Do you use any other tricks to stay fit and healthy this holiday season? I would love to hear from you, comment below.