How To Stay Happy, Healthy, and Safe This Holiday Season
With Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Year's Eve, and other big holidays right around the corner, the invitations to eat, drink, and be merry should start hitting your inbox very soon. If you ever wondered if it were possible to avoid the annual year-end roller coaster ride of weight gain and some common buffet line pitfalls, read these three tips below. You'll also learn how to stay alive and make it to next year's holiday season.
1) Keep Good Company: The worst possible time to hang around lazy and negative people and to be less active than usual is the holiday season. If you're hanging around with people who would rather stay inside eating fast food while scrolling through their drama on Instagram and Facebook during lunchtime instead of hanging around people who eat well and enjoy going outside for a walk, you're cheating your body out of all the productive energy and positive mood boosters that exercise and fresh air have to offer.
Try This: Go out of your way to associate with friends and co-workers who make nutrition, fitness, and celebrating life a priority. Remember, you are who you surround yourself with.
2) Pace Yourself: No, we're not talking about exercise here. We're talking about food. Chances are you'll find yourself in front of multiple buffets this holiday season. Don't let your eyes be bigger than your stomach. Try not to compete with the person next to you to see who can pile the most stuff onto their plate. Portion control is paramount during the holidays.
Try This: Make an effort to start your buffet line excursion by simply making a small salad on your first run. Eat slowly, have some of your water, then return for round two. Try for one piece of chicken, beef, or fish, and then a large spoonful of veggies on the side. Eat slowly. Finish your glass of water. Drink another glass of water slowly while enjoying the company and conversation around you. Wait for 10 minutes. If you are being honest with yourself, you'll realize that you're not hungry anymore and don't even want or need to eat dessert. *Now, if you are invited to multiple parties and you happen to enjoy dessert as much as I do, it's okay to have dessert at one or two of them. (Especially, if your wife makes a ridiculous homemade apple pie.) If your regular daily nutrition is on point, a few desserts over the holidays won't hurt. Moderation is key. Just keep in mind, the extra calories add up fast!
3) Call Uber: If you're not getting enough sleep, if you like to text while driving, or you enjoy drinking during the holidays, DON'T DRIVE. The amount of car accidents and deaths each year during the holiday season due to impaired driving is staggering. The worst part is that most of them could have been avoided with common sense.
Try This: If you're driving home later than usual after attending a party and you feel your eyes getting very heavy, pull over as soon as you can find a safe place to take a little power nap. If you know in advance that you'll be getting home later than usual, call an Uber for your round trip transportation. Most people don't realize that drowsy driving can be just as dangerous as drunk driving. Speaking of drunk driving, STOP IT. Don't think you're the exception and you can get yourself home after a few drinks just because you've been extremely lucky all these years. Call an Uber. And speaking of being lucky, if you haven't crashed or killed anyone yet from texting while driving you're playing with fire. Either pull over and type your reply or just call an Uber so you can text your heart out. Remember, an Uber might be more expensive, but you can't put a price on your life, the lives of others, and your future.
Wishing you a happy, healthy, and safe holiday season!
Marcello Pedalino, CFT, is the author of the new inspirational book on personal growth and development, Celebrate Life. He is an award-winning entrepreneur, lifestyle expert, and fitness trainer. He delivers dynamic keynote presentations to corporations and organizations across the country who need help making Energy Management and Work-Life balance a priority. *In addition to being an amazing pediatrician, his wife, Dr. Jill Garripoli Pedalino, makes the best homemade meatballs, sauce, and apple pie in Jersey. :)