As the holidays approach, we all get busy and sometimes forget to take time for ourselves. Obviously it’s important to schedule some ‘me’ time for relaxing, but it’s also important to maintain the healthy lifestyle you’ve been working towards all year. Think about it, if you give up on your health and wellness just two months out of the year that’s more than 16% of your life spent living unhealthy. In short, don’t give up and tell yourself that you’ll hit the ‘reset button” in January.
So what’s the plan? The plan is to plan! You know you’re going to eat a ton over Thanksgiving, you know when your holiday work party is, and you know that New Year’s Eve is a total loss. So plan to eat healthy and workout a little extra on these weeks. Ben Franklin famously said “by failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail,” and it’s true. Consistency breeds success and if you give up on the last two months of the year your consistency will be lost and your road to success will take a step backward. Plan your eating, exercise, sleep, and relaxation time in advance and you’re sure to be in a better position to succeed.
Part of your plan should include the unexpected. You know things are going to pop up and you need to expect them. Don’t let it derail you! Your plan is not an “all or nothing” proposition. If you’re planning on a workout and you get roped into an evening at the bar with some coworkers, don’t use it as an excuse to completely give up. One misstep does not constitute a total loss. Remember, you expected this! So just move forward and keep on keepin’ on!
Try to exercise early. It’s easy for the day to get away from you, especially during the holidays. If you exercise early in the day you’ll remove the temptation to pass on it later, and you’ll enter your day already having taken a step to success. It reminds me of the commencement speech given by a former Navy Seal which explains why making your bed each morning is the best way to start the day. It’s the same with your exercise routine. If you begin your day with exercise ‘you will have accomplished the first task of the day. It will give you a sense of pride, and it will encourage you to do another task, and another, and another…”
Sleep, sleep, sleep. It seems like every month a new study come out touting the benefits of sleep. I’m not sure which are scientifically accurate and which are bogus, but I think we can all agree that when we get enough sleep we feel better and we’re more likely to implement our plan for wellness.
So enjoy your holiday with a healthy mindset so that you can enjoy many other holidays in the years to come. Plan well, sleep well, expect the unexpected, exercise early, and have a happy, healthy, and relaxing holiday season.