Avoid the “Holiday 15”

Turkey, mashed potatoes and gravy, oh my! Better watch out for that third slice of pumpkin pie. Everyone knows that a holiday cannot truly be celebrated without the comfort food-favorites. The good news is, we don’t have to sacrifice any of these tasty dishes at all, and here’s why. The secret is maintaining regular exercise routines with a healthy diet and finding your perfect stress reliever so that you can enjoy every holiday moment!

It’s often difficult for us to find the time or energy to work out during the holiday season. As we are constantly occupied with other activities and priorities within our own busy schedule, we neglect our own physical and mental health. We must take the initiative to adjust our schedules and allow ourselves some time for improving our fitness. Lifestyle coach, April Masini, suggests, “Instead of trying to squeeze exercise into your schedule, take other things out. The goal is not to do more, but to do less, but do it all well” (webmd.com).

The best advice is to PLAN WISELY. Enjoy the holidays without undergoing a vicious cycle of stressing, eating, eating more, feeling much worse, and then back to stressing again. Start by setting goals even before your New Year’s resolution. Goals may include spending more time with family, joining a local gym, the lists goes on.

Another helpful trick is to follow the “90/10 rule.” This means that 90% of our diets should consist of healthy, nutrient-rich foods and drinks, while 10% can consist of whatever we want (a.k.a. junk food). The “90/10 rule” is perfect for a well-balanced diet that is just the right amount of healthful benefits that is not too restricting! Practice this rule now in order to get yourself accustomed to it, and then it’ll be much easier to apply it to holiday eating and avoid over-indulging.

The most important thing we can never neglect though, is giving thanks for these memorable moments. While we constantly find ourselves stuck in our busy schedules, we need to pause and recognized our gratitude for the most important things in life. This holiday season, let’s plan to take care of ourselves and our bodies, as well as acknowledge all of life’s blessings. Happy Holidays!


How to Run the Perfect Holiday Run:

Warm up by walking for two minutes. Start with an easy effort and build to a brisk pace just slower than a jog. This is an important step, don’t skip it!

Run at an easy effort (conversational) for five minutes to continue to warm up.

Repeat eight times (16 minutes).

Run at a sprint effort (hard) for 30 seconds.

Recover with 90 seconds of very easy jogging or brisk walking.

Walk it out to cool it down for two minutes.

Total Time: 25 minutes

*You can use speed or incline on the treadmill to increase effort.

**You can also perform this workout on a bike, elliptical machine, or on a stairwell. When I’m traveling and training for a hilly race, I’ll hit the stairs for intervals and walk the hallways for recovery in my hotel.


Check out the Kernersville Family YMCA’s Christmas Combo Programs this December for great sessions of fun, friendly exercise!

12/18 5:30-8:00pm Christmas Combo Program. Come and try out some of our classes! Please bring a snack or

dish to share and a healthy recipe!

12/26 9:30am-12:00pm Work off that Jingle Jiggle with another Christmas Combo Program! Try out some of our

other classes in a fun morning where we will exchange healthy recipes and burn off some of the goodies Santa brought us!

Categories: SPORTS

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