The holidays are gearing into full swing, and if your dance card looks anything like mine, it’s filled with Champagne-fueled celebratory dinners, a blowout brunch with plenty of punch, boozy post-shopping lunches, and cocktail-filled happy hours. This doesn’t even include the desserts and edible gifts I’ll be making (and eating!) and the big meals I’ll be making (and eating!) on Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, and New Year’s Eve. Plus, there’s a chance Santacon might be on the agenda. All of this drinking, eating, and making merry is enough to make my clothes stop fitting. However, I’ve recently joined a studio and am determined to be as healthy as possible for the next month. To figure out how to achieve this, I spoke with Lisa Corsello, a fitness expert and the founder of a popular Bay Area workout, Burn. Lisa is an ACE-certified personal trainer, nutrition consultant and group fitness instructor who teaches the most fabulous cardio-pilates-strength-training fusion classes. Here are her simple tips for staying healthy and fit during the holiday season.
- Weigh yourself regularly. Studies have shown that those who weigh themselves regularly are able to maintain their weight more easily. By being aware of when we start to gain weight, we can make small, manageable adjustments to diet and exercise to help stay on track.
- Exercise portion control. Don't skip meals or deprive yourself of the foods you love during the holidays. Instead, practice eating only half of what you would normally eat when it comes to dessert and less-healthy side dishes. Load up on the healthier sides like high-fiber veggies and leaner cuts of meat (such as chicken breasts and fish) so you'll stay fuller longer.
- Stay active. Make time for exercise each day. Regular exercise will help maintain your weight, and it’s a great way to relieve stress and sleep better. Even when you are traveling, it’s important to stay active. Got 30 minutes of free time? Break a sweat by throwing in a workout DVD, or visit YouTube for a variety of online workouts.
- Plan ahead. Go online and research just how many calories are in the foods you normally eat during the holiday season. Being aware of what you're consuming can motivate you to choose healthier alternatives. You never want to enter a holiday feast on an empty stomach. This can cause overeating and overindulging. Stock up on healthy snacks that help ease cravings and satisfy your appetite.
- Change it up. Try a new exercise class, walking/running route, or sport. If you've been wanting to finally take that skiing lesson, do it! Trying something different will challenge your body in a new and healthy way, and it will help keep your routine fresh and your mind more engaged.
To learn more about Corsello’s fitness fusion classes, check out the Burn DVD.
What’s your plan for staying healthy this holiday season?