Staying Healthy During the Holidays

I’m a big fan of everything in moderation.  I don’t like depriving myself of the joys in life.  I also think I enjoy treats more when I have them sparingly.

But during the holidays, it can be tough to eat in moderation.  At Thanksgiving, there are so many yummy options to put on my plate!  Our dinners are usually something that requires no sides or only one side (grilled meat on a salad or pasta/quinoa mixed with veggies).  Having so many options makes it hard to say no.  Especially when some of those options aren’t things we tend to make for dinner – I can’t tell you the last time we had stuffing or mashed potatoes when it wasn’t a holiday meal.

Thanksgiving is like a great big cheat day for our (usually) healthy dinners during the rest of the year.

But between Thanksgiving, Christmas, holiday parties, dinners on the go while shopping, “moderation” sometimes goes out the window.

So this year I’m participating in two challenges to remain mindful of keeping balance during the holiday season.  Since there is a high likelihood of eating/drinking more, I also need to make sure I exercise more.

Elf 4 Health

The lovely ladies over at Nutritionella and The Lean Green Bean are hosting Elf 4 Health, a month long challenge to maintain a healthy lifestyle during the holidays.  What’s great about this program is it gives you a specific goal for each day.  These can be anything related to fitness (100 burpees),  nutrition (meatless monday), or lifestyle (unsubscribe from 3 magazines/newsletters you don’t read).  I also love that it pairs you up with another “elf” to keep you motivated.

Interested in joining?  Everyone gets a new elf in mid-December, so it’s not too late to join session 2.  Click here to learn more and sign up for the 2nd session.

Delta Running Challenge

Through the years, a lot of the girls in my college sorority (Tri Delta!) have gotten into running.  We live all over the country now, and we occasionally travel to do races together (see Disney Princess Half, Veterans Day 10K in 2010 and 2011, Nike Woman’s Half).  Instead of trying to schedule in travel and a race, we have gotten a pretty good sized group together and do our own remote challenge.

So we set a goal, which I think has changed every year, for everyone.  This year, it’s 10 miles a week or 3 hours of exercise.  At the end of the week, we email or captain and let her know we reached the goal.  She then selects one winner at random, who gets a Starbucks gift card.

I don’t know how many years we’ve been doing this now, but it’s a lot of fun.  It’s flexible, motivating and, most importantly, it’s a great way to stay in touch with the girls from college.

What do you do to stay healthy during the holidays?




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