November 7, 2014

Healthy Holidays

For the Friday linkup with the DC ladies, Mar, at Mar on the Run , Cynthia at You Signed up for What and Courtney at Eat, Pray, Run DC , staying healthy and on track through the holidays is this weeks topic. 

The last two years, November and December were heavy duty mileage for me with Goofy Challenge in 2013 and the Dopey Challenge in 2014.  If you don't know what they are, good for you.  Only a crazy person runs multiple races on consecutive days.  But what it did do was help me become very disciplined during the holidays with both eating and drinking!  I will also confess that during a couple of my back to back long training runs, I actually ate Christmas cookies in the middle of the run as fuel.  Yes, they were delicious!

Here are some tips to keep you keep on track when parties and activities can take over your normally healthy routine.

1. Plan each week carefully, and know that there will be days when your exercise routine and food intake may not be the best. This is not the time to beat yourself up over a missed day at the gym, or a cupcake at the work Christmas party. The holidays are a wonderful time of celebration with friends and family, so have fun and know that January is around the corner!

2. When attending a holiday party, bring a dish that you will be happy to eat that is guilt free.  Some suggestions are shrimp cocktail, a veggie tray, or maybe chicken Teriyaki skewers.

3. Run a turkey trot on Thanksgiving or plan a family hike or walk. We have created a tradition of running a turkey trot early on Thanksgiving morning.  Actually, this year Tom will be joining us and he hates running.  But we will make sure he has fun and runs at least one or two training runs ahead of time!



4. Start a family tradition based on an activity instead of what you are eating. Depending on where you live, it could be ice skating, a night of holiday board games, a drive through a residential neighborhood viewing the lights and decorations or perhaps caroling with a group of your neighbors.

5.  Hand Sanitizer!  Now is the cold and flu season and washing your hands frequently and using hand sanitizing gel when a sink is not available is so important.  I brought one of the first cases of flu to NC last September after flying to and from the Boston area.  It was no fun being laid up for nearly a week, so I now have gel in the car, in my purse, gym bag etc.

What are your suggestions on keeping well during the holidays?

22 comments:

  1. Definitely the hand sanitizer! I break out the special scents from Bath & Body at this time of year. Of course, my hands smelling like gingerbread might not be the best thing to keep me from wanting to snack :)

    Must have a plan (I always must have a plan. And I like the idea of activities - we go see several trees or attend outdoor holiday events.

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    1. Oh I need to go to Bath and Body Works to get the holiday scents too.

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  2. I second your first tip. While we all want to be conscious of what we're eating and how we're exercising, the holidays is also about spending and enjoying our time with family and friends. A missed workout here or a little treat there isn't going to be the worst thing at the end of the day.

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    1. Thanks Kathryn. Everything in moderation is the best way to get through the holidays!

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  3. Great tip to plan out the weeks. I'll be running my first Turkey Trot this year. I'm oddly excited about it.

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    1. We have so much fun at the turkey trot race on Thanksgiving. The one we have done the last few years benefits Toys for Tots too, so a win win event.

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  4. ENJOY IT. It's about moderation not deprivation. I am always training for a half this time of year. Sign up for a race that will keep you accountable.

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    1. Great idea to have a race on the calendar. That always keeps you on track!

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  5. I love the idea of bring Chicken Skewers to a party! I would have never thought of that. As you know, December should be a high mileage month for us too. As soon as I get over this cold I gotta get back out there again! -M

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    1. Hope you are feeling better soon Meranda!

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  6. OMG - how did I not think of hand sanitizer! that is brilliant!

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  7. Yes, and the holidays scents too. I am stopping at bath and Body Works today to get the Christmas scented ones!

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  8. I love the idea of starting a family tradition that doesn't evolve around food. When I was younger, my family and I would bundle up and walk around the neighborhood to look at all of the Christmas decorations. I'm a big fan of winter-themed races; keeps me active in the cold/snowy months, and are a lot of fun :)

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  9. Haha, you're right about training! It does make me feel a little better about eating badly, just knowing I am training for a race and I burn it off. I try to eat fairly healthy, but it's hard and honestly, the holidays are just once a year and this is why we work out- so we can cut lose a few days out of the year. I think the turkey trots and holiday races are a great idea too, we have several here.

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  10. Hand sanitizer is a must...especially since I'm a preschool teacher! I've learned also that having just one bite of the dessert usually satisfies my craving.

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  11. i can't believe i didn't think of hand sanitizer since i live off that stuff! thanks for linking up :)

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  12. All great suggestions! I do love the idea of switching the focus from holiday food to holiday fun!

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  13. Great tips. I also try to bring healthier dishes to holiday parties I attend.

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  14. We have the family tradition of starting Thanksgiving with a Turkey Trot as well! It is a ton of fun to be out and active with the family, instead of just eating all day :)

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  15. Awesome tips.
    My biggest problem is making it a whole season of gluttony and not just on or two special days.
    Heard something at Weight Watchers I really liked, "It is a holiDAY, not a holiweek." I think I will really work on remember that and only enjoying the actual holidays, and not going buck wild all season.

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  16. Love your tips! My husband and I started running a Thanksgiving morning turkey trot years ago, and now our adult sons, DIL, and her family run it with us. It's such a great way to start the day!

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  17. Great tip about bringing something healthy to the party - with all the holiday party goodies it's refreshing when there is something healthy there to balance it!

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