Christmas celebrations have begun in earnest and whether it’s an office Christmas Party, drinks with friends or your end of year celebrations with the rest of the Gas Station Fitness faithful, chances are, your weeks leading up to Christmas will be busy with social events. So if you have multiple engagements planned and are worried about losing the will-power to avoid those Christmas indulgences, we have 5 tips to help you avoid that festive binge!
1. Eat before you get there
Never go out hungry. If you are heading out to an afternoon or an early evening event that will have food, try and eat a healthy snack that satiates appetite before you go. Something like fruit and some nuts, or an egg and some veggies or something else with protein. Even a small meal such as a salad with some protein and healthy fats would be a good idea. Go in semi-full so you can nibble on things and look like you are participating but aren’t blowing apart your nutrition habits by partaking in a Christmas food frenzy.
2. Do not skip meals before “The Meal”
If you are going to an event, such as an evening meal, do not skip meals before hand to compensate for the upcoming meal. Doing so will make you more likely to over-indulge. How many times have you skimped on calories earlier in the day, before your meal, gone in really hungry, eaten to excess and then felt miserable afterwards? It is not a great way to enjoy the festive season and will only leave you chastising yourself in the days after. Eat breakfast, eat lunch, have a snack even and go into your event satisfied that you are in the best position to make good food decisions.
3. Make better drink choices
Drinking alcohol is one of those things that we understand you are going to do over the Christmas period. And why wouldn’t you allow yourself a tipple or two? However, if you’re planning on drinking alcohol, there is a “better” way. And although we don’t want to tell you what to drink, if you care about your nutrition progress, then you may wish to choose distilled over fermented. For example, choose gin, vodka and other spirits over beer or wine to manage the yeast and mould content used in the fermentation process. These contents are known to be inflammatory, which will only add to your hangover, and make you feel worse the next day.
4. Drink plenty of water
The rule here is usually 3 glasses of water to every glass of wine or beer you drink to help your body manage the alcohol. The reality, when you are socialising with others is often quite different. But if you can order a glass of water with every other drink or ask the servers to provide water for the table you are setting your self up for next-day success!
5. Enjoy Christmas!
We don’t want to be a bunch of humbugs or dampen your Christmas spirit! You can absolutely allow yourself some festive treats, the odd glass of wine or beer and still maintain your health and fitness goals. The important thing is to be smart with your food and your alcohol consumption. Remember we can always partake without indulging, celebrate without binging and enjoy the season free of guilt. Always relate your choices to the type of lifestyle that you want to live.
If you would like more advice on training or nutrition please visit our website.
Written by James Macdonald – Coach