With the season of fun and festive cheer on our doorstep, you’ll want to make sure that you keep looking and feeling your best so you can start the New Year off with a bang! Use my tips to success so that you can enjoy the holidays whilst staying fit and looking looking your bestl!
1. SET DIET RULES
Keeping to a diet and exercise programme can be tough at this time of year. So instead of cheating and going head first into a downward spiral, choose in advance when you are going to let your hair down and when you are going to behave and stay in control. That way you can achieve a good balance whilst enjoying yourself without the nagging guilt in the back of your mind.
2. PLAN YOUR WORKOUTS
You know how busy this time of year gets so plan your week ahead so you can ensure that your workouts are not forgotten. This might mean being open to getting up earlier on some days or using some of your lunch break but you have scheduled them in and you’ll feel great for doing it!
3. SHOP WELL
When food shopping, plan your menus for the week and use seasonal ingredients. Cook hearty stews in bulk so you can eat them up throughout the week or freeze them for convenience. Make warming soups with fresh vegetables and beans to give you a filling and healthy lunch. The more filling and nutritious your meals, the less tempted you will be to snack on sugary foods.
4. BOOST YOUR ENERGY LEVELS
Kick your caffeine habit into touch. Studies show that caffeinated drinks have no more benefits for increasing your concentration levels or stimulating the brain any more than decaffeinated options.
5. MAKE A COMMITMENT
Exercise first thing in the morning so it is out of the way and life doesn’t take over. At this time of year in particular traffic congestion and problems on public transport can really get in the way of your well meaning resolve. So get it done early and you can avoid the frustration of your day going wrong.
6. LOOK AFTER YOUR SKIN
Central heating and cold air can dry your skin so make sure you exfoliate regularly, and moisturise regularly to keep your skin looking and feeling fresh.
7. FIGHT BACK AGAINST ACHING MUSCLES
After your workout make sure you cool down properly and stretch well and treat yourself to a sauna if your lucky enough to have the option. Delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS) and the cold weather are not friends and you want to keep yourself feeling fresh and envigorated. If you are working out hard lifting lots of heavy weights, investigate the benefits of Branched Chain Amino Acids (BCAAs) as a supplement to help reduce the likelihood of DOMS occurring.
8. CHILL OUT
Put time aside for yourself, everyone needs a bit of ‘me’ time now and then, even during this fun and festive time of year.
9. TAKE THE STAIRS
Finding it hard to ignore that tin of sweets? Burn your endulgence off by fitting a few stair climbs in through your working day, or, if there are none a minute of star jumps is just as effective.
10. GIVE YOUR DIGESTION A BREAK
Over indulgence can really take its toll on the bodies processes. Give yourself a break every 2 weeks over the festive season by giving yourself a low calorie day. This allows your body to regulate your metabolism and reduce bloating. Ensure you drink plenty of water and freshly squeezed fruit juices to rehydrate.
11. CARDIO CLEAN
If your too busy getting ready for guests to stay why not turn up your stereo and dance while you clean, this will benefit your fitness as well as de-stress you make you feel good.
12. TONE UP TROUBLE SPOTS
If you’ve left it too late to tone up so you feel great in your party dress. Make some quick fixs fast. Tricep dips on the edge of the bath every other day will help firm your arms and you can’t go wrong with some tummy control tights to help give a firm, slimline sillouette.
13. GET SOME FEEL GOOD TUNES
Making playlists of your favorite feel good music tracks to last as long as you want to work out for will help to keep you motivated and ensure that you don’t finish until the last track has come to an end.
14. STAY HYDRATED
Especially at this time of year dehydration can leave us feeling sluggish, tired and hungry. Make sure you aim to drink at least 2.5 litres of water a day to keep you feeling energised and trim.
15. BEAT TIREDNESS
Cut out refined starchy carbohydrates in your meals. White bread and pasta for example will leave you feeling immediately satisfied but will quickly lead to lethargy and sugar cravings. Replace with whole grain varieties and increase your protein intake to keep you feeling fuller for longer.
In your efforts to get yourself toned and trim for the party season, try adding this quick full body circuit into your regime every night.
60 second running on the spot
15 x squats
15 x press ups
15 x lunges
15 x tricep dips
15 x donkey kicks
30 second plank
Repeat twice and you’ll have worked all the major muscles groups in your body and be done in less than 15 minutes.
17. HARD AND FAST
Workouts don’t need to be long and tedious to be beneficial. Introduce high intensity intervals into your cardio programme and you can be done in just 30 minutes and boost the metabolic effects of your workout at the same time.
18. DYE IT UP
Save time on these dark cold winter mornings by getting your eyebrows and lashes tinted. The results are natural looking but with the enhancement that make up will give you without the faff.
19. TAKE CONTROL OF STRESS
Don’t let this busy time get the better of you. Make a list of everything you have left to do wether it is getting ready for christmas or deadlines at work. As you accomplish tasks, tick them off, it will leave you feeling much less stressed and more in control.
20. BE DRINK AWARE
It is recommended that we give our body a rest from alcohol for at least 2 consecutive days per week. This gives our liver and kidneys a well earned rest.
21. FESTIVE OUTINGS
Make use of the many tourist attractions London has to offer at this time of year and get your exercise in at the same time. Go ice skating in hyde park or discover kew gardens after dark with a walk along its illuminated trail.
22. BRIGHTEN YOUR COMPLEXION
After moisturising your face use a vitamin c rich serum to help give your skin a fresh and radiant glow.
23. SLEEP TIGHT
Burning the candle at both ends is never good for anybody. Try to get a good nights sleep every night and if you are having trouble relaxing enough to do this try some of the holistic therapies available over the counter. Lavender scented lotions and night time rescue remedy are 2 healthy ways to assist a trouble free night.
24. RELAX AND ENJOY
Don’t stress out about falling off the waggon. You want to enjoy this time of year as much as the next person so plan ahead, stay focused and don’t punish yourself for the odd hiccup. You can always add some extra star jumps in the following day to make amends.