Smart Holidays.

It is the Christmas season, and we are all expected to turn up the lights and volume on celebrations. Of course, it is the festive period, and it can be tricky to slow down, release family expectations, and do things differently. However, being intentional in how you spend the holidays pays off in the new year. There is a cost that comes with too much stimulation and excitement during the holiday season. How then do we minimize the damage that comes from too much drinking and feasting at holiday parties?

In all that we do, moderation is key during the holiday period.

Liquid Calories.

Taking too much alcohol can prevent you from reaping the rewards of all the work you have put into exercise throughout the year. If you are aiming for a healthy weight and more energy to stay engaged and active in the new year, you might want to consider drinking less and more wisely. Alcohol is one of the greatest sources of hidden calories in our diets, containing 7 calories per gram, while a gram of protein or carbohydrate contains only 4 calories of energy.

Moderation is the key.

You may have started your night out with the best of dietary intentions. After a couple of glasses of beer or wine and a tequila shot, you feel in need of a packet of crisps, chips, or a kilogram of roasted meat to soak up some of the alcohol. Some drinks also come with mixers; sugary drinks like tonic, ginger ale, and coke add roughly 50 calories per mini bottle. Be sure to keep everything in moderation during this season.

We are all social animals, and if we do choose to drink, let us all remember that, apart from water, liquids do have calories.

Feel Fitness.
We all have control over what we consume.

Healthy tips for holiday parties.

During this period of Christmas, when going out for a party, you might need to make the following considerations:

  1. Don’t go out thirsty. If you are thirsty when you start your night out, make sure your first drink is alcohol-free.
  2. Don’t drink on an empty stomach. It takes about an hour to metabolize a unit of alcohol. Eat before you go out because it takes much longer if your stomach is empty at the outset.
  3. If drinking soft drinks between alcoholic ones, be wary of high sugar content; consider diet drinks or fizzy water.
  4. Drink lots of fluids, and don’t push yourself into a workout the day after. Your body is working hard to process the alcohol and deal with the dehydration and possibly lack of sleep.  Allow yourself to recover.
  5. After an event (race, obstacle race, or game), replenish carbohydrates, restore fluid balance, stimulate muscle repair, and then enjoy a glass of wine or beer if you have to.
Alcohol consumption can cause muscle cramps.

You may not be a big drinker, but you might just be attracted to the social aspects of the holidays, and inevitably there’s alcohol involved in these events. Aside from the caloric issue, excess alcohol consumption is linked to hypertension, stroke, heart and liver disease, and some cancers of the digestive tract.  We are all social animals, and if we do choose to drink, let us all remember that, apart from water, liquids do have calories.

Giving yourself the gift of rest and relaxation over the holidays doesn’t mean you have to miss out on the fun. You can be smart as you enjoy the season. Happy holidays

Coach Philip.