During the holiday season there are countless parties, stressful work days finishing things up for 2018, and of course the dreaded holiday travel. I’ve had so many friends and clients completely fall off the wagon during this time of year and then January is spent just putting their body back together. As 2018 winds to a close, let’s look at some ways to “survive the holidays” so you can hit the ground running in 2019.
Regardless of if you’re traveling or just bouncing from holiday party to holiday party, it’s important to drink more water. Dehydration is no joke during this time of year, especially those in colder climates. Set yourself up for success each day by putting a glass of water on your nightstand before bed and when you wake up the next morning, drink that glass of water before getting out of bed. You can also go ahead and enjoy those wonderful holiday cocktails but include a few glasses of water as well. I try to stick to one glass of water after each cocktail.
We tend to eat in excess over these next few weeks than the whole year combined. It’s simply inevitable with all of the office parties, social outings, and of course family holiday meals. A great way to keep your gut healthy during this time is investing in a quality probiotic. I personally take these by Thorne Research. I love these because they don’t have to be refrigerated so you can take them with you. Keeping your gut healthy through this time will also help in preventing you from getting sick.
You’ll feel so much better even from squeezing in 15 minutes a day. If you don’t believe me, check out our “Home For The Holidays” quickie workout that doesn’t require any equipment and only takes 15 minutes. Every little workout or cardio session adds up, so if you know a rough night is coming or it just ended, get back on that exercise horse so you can stay on track. There’s nothing worse than waking up on January 1st knowing you haven’t worked out in weeks. We call that the “holiday hangover” friends and it’s not fun.
Going to a party hungry is like going to the grocery store hungry: It all looks good and you grab everything in site off the shelves, even things you normally wouldn’t. A great tip I share with all of my clients is to eat something before you go to the party. Yes…before! A big salad with a little bit of protein will go a long way in preventing you from showing up hungry. By doing this you’ll eliminate the need to pig out on appetizers, lay waste to some entrees, and devour every dessert in sight.
If you know you’re going to a party or event that will have some amazing food or lots of drinks, plan your day accordingly. Consume more veggies, drink more water, and get a great workout in. Make sure you’re prepared for the debauchery to come, so you can enjoy yourself without the weight of guilt holding you down.
This needs zero explaining…. just try get some sleep when you can. 15 minute power naps are a great way to get through these busy days. Also, if you're away from home, use a white noise app on your phone while you sleep to drown out all of those unfamiliar creeks or noisy neighbors at the hotel. You'll sleep so much better without these interruptions.
Everywhere you go (especially here in SoCal), juice bars are constantly popping up. Getting a large juice in will give you that extra little boost of energy and immunity. Nobody ever said you’re consuming too many vegetables!
Just because you’re extremely busy doesn’t mean you can’t keep up with your mobility training. We have plenty of videos on our YouTube channel of quick mobility routines that will combat all that sitting that holiday travel presents. If that doesn’t work for you, you can always get some shoulder, neck and hip CARs throughout the day.
I got this tip from my boy Chris Guerrero (Instagram @proa_nutrition_performance). A typical holiday party with family goes like this: You show up, you have some drinks, you eat way too much food, and you fall on the couch and sit there like a sloth for the rest of the day. This year, try this out instead: once you’re done eating (or maybe before eating), find the kids, go outside and simply have fun with them. You’ll burn some calories, have some fun, and remember what it’s like to be a kid again. Plus, there’s less drama with kids than adults!
If you want a piece of pie, then have a piece of freaking pie. What I see happen often is that we guilt ourselves into thinking we shouldn’t enjoy ourselves and when we do we think “Welp, I already screwed up so I mine as well go all in.” Life is all about moderation so the world will not end if you have some dessert or some decadent entrees. Enjoy guilt-free, in moderation and you’ll be ok. Just don’t go crazy.
For more strength and mobility tips, check out my YouTube Channel, Instagram or Facebook.
ABOUT COACH MATT PIPPIN
Matt is a Strength and Mobility Coach with over 15 years experience in his field. He's coached over a thousand professional, collegiate and everyday athletes with the goal to help them move, feel and perform at their highest level. CLICK HERE to learn more.
NSCA Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist
Level 3: Fascial Stretch Specialist
Level 1: Institute of Motion Health Coach
Certified FRC Mobility Specialist (FRCms)
Level 1 Kinstretch Instructor
Weck Method Qualified