Once again, it’s December! Where has all the time gone? Its stills throws me thinking that Christmas is almost here when I swear I was just seeing Halloween photos. It also throws me walking into Kmart and Target looking for a bikini (new cosplay project!) and all I see is candy canes, fake Christmas trees and penguins. I don’t think my brain is used to Christmas in summer yet. (Yay for living in Australia!)

One of the big things I do notice, especially as a Personal Trainer, is during this time of year a lot of people are struggling to stay focused and on track with their health and fitness goals. Whether you live somewhere warm or cold, December can be a killer to waist lines, mental states, and wallets. Between extra events (Christmas parties, family get togethers, etc.), a sudden abundance of food everywhere (chocolates, cookies, beer…), and the fact the weather outside isn’t always ideal (blizzards and black ice, or +40 degrees with a UV index of 14), getting through December with your health in-tacked can seem like mission impossible!

But it is possible! Last year I wrote my Top 3 Trainer Tips For December. And this year I have more tips for staying on track for the holidays! Because you deserve to be your best self and not fall off the wagon! Why wait to 2017 to restart your health journey when you can keep it up all holiday long? So let’s get into it!

1. Don’t wait till January to make resolutions! 

If you want to start yoga, dance, or get a gym membership, look into it now! Many studios will have beginner courses starting in January but they will fill up before the start date, so get on top of that registration. Some gyms offer deals about training free in December if you sign up for a membership for the new year, which means you could start today and not have to wait. December can also mean funny scheduling due to public holidays, so be on the lookout for workshops or events which can be a perfect way to try out a class or studio before making a full long term commitment.

2. Suggest get togethers with family and friends that aren’t food centric.

Instead of lattes, choose lycra! It’s easy to over indulge when the main focus of your get together is turkey, coffee, or decorating ginger bread houses. Opt for a more waist friendly option and suggest ice skating, snow shoeing, beach volleyball, or even helping out with the present wrapping. Or simply wander the neighbourhood at night and check out the light displays (carolling is optional!). It’s easier to keep the extra calories in check if they aren’t the main focus of the event.

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Some people decorate trees… I decorate kettlebells 

3. Forgo the doggy bag of treats.

Enjoy the treats at the event, but leave them there. If you bring home the extra candy, cookies, and Christmas pudding, there is a greater chance that you’ll over indulge. So let the treat be a treat, and load up on the healthier options in your house.

4. Join a group class, get a PT, or do an Instagram challenge to stay accountable.

If you need that extra kick in the pants to keep your fitness on point, try joining a class, doing PT sessions, or doing an Instagram challenge during December. By making you accountable to showing up to a class, session, or daily photo, you are more likely to stick it through December when everything else is going crazy. I’ve been doing the #14DayHoliBurnChallenge this past week and boy does it help! Even if the accountability is mostly in my head, knowing that I have to post my daily photo keeps me motivated to workout everyday. (Plus it’s free!)

5. Drop hints that you want fitness/health gifts this year as presents.

New gear, free classes, and some raw bliss balls can be a strong motivator to keep up your habits until Christmas Day. Plus it sets you up for a good start for the new year, because who doesn’t want to squat it out in new leggings? Further, by being vocal about wanting to stay healthy you may just avoid being loaded down with chocolate from all your Secret Santa’s.
With a little bit of planning, some will power, and a bit of festive cheer, December can be just another month of you working towards and achieving your goals! What are your favourite holiday health tips?

Happy Holidays!
-SB

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