I always feel the Holidays coming. They are my favorite time of year. Laughter, gifts for others, and lots of family meals. Yet, people start to avoid me like a telemarketer. I get it. But, let’s have an educated discussion about the effects of the majority of our population shotgunning egg nog for five to six weeks to roll in the New Year. #PARTY
 
“Results of multiple studies agree that in western societies, the winter holidays are a high risk period, with an average weight gain of 0.4 to 0.7 kg and that gains of this magnitude are sufficient to drive the obesity epidemic in the United States.”
-Schoeller, 2014
 
We also know that regardless of weight gain, body compositions in the general population tend to change for the worst during the holiday season. Thus, if you stack up 1 to 1.5 pounds of fat every Mid-November to Mid-January from the age of 20 to 45 – that equals 25-40 lbs of padding you just put on your vehicle even if you are weight stable the rest of the year. Shiatttt.
 
Thus, as we approach the dark side of the year in terms of the health and fitness we have to come up with some strategies to help us be successful during this time and then we likely have to redefine what this success looks like because nobody likes the guy who eats broccoli for dessert on Christmas Eve. Trust me.
 
My goal is always for my clients to maintain their weight during the holiday season. I think of that as an enormous win and I let them know it. I also tend to change goals a bit during the holidays.
 
Oh pass that extra muffin?
 
Hello, 10,000 steps a day and some extra deadlifts.
 
Everyone reading this has a responsibility to make the holidays a little healthier, but we also have a responsibility to enjoy the time with our loved ones. So we do our best from a nutrition standpoint.
 
We eat real food.
 
We cook and prepare delicious items with others.
 
We stay on our vegetable game.
 
We drink our water.
 
We don’t go into food comas…regularly.
 
But, maybe this is the time of the year we also turn up the volume on our S&C program and we buy a pedometer. And then when poke this aspect we have to make sure that sleep and stress reduction don’t take a dive with in-laws, airports, and sleeping on grandma’s couch.
 
It’s a dance, maybe an awkward polka between ginger bread houses and too much turkey. And we are all going to handle it a little differently, but I think the deciding factor is that we need a plan and we have to pay attention.
 
And it likely starts tomorrow. Get ahead of the game. Yes, the Friday before Thanksgiving.