Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Holiday Wellness Plan

*updated* Thank you to those who caught my typo!  I was wondering why I was asked if I was "from the future!"  Guess what, it is only 2011...I need to stop getting ahead of myself- we will not be entering 2013 when January 1st rolls around!  For humor, I will leave my silly mistake so you can all have a good laugh at my expense!  Have a great Tuesday! *updated*

There are less than 8 weeks to the New Year.  Are you aware of this fact?  It is certainly one that has me a bit anxious.  In these short weeks before 2013 I will direct two 5k events, attend two Thanksgiving dinners, host the Live 58: event, walk in the Mooresville Christmas Parade, host a Christmas party, attend two other Christmas parties, and likely travel to Atlanta.

That's not all, all of those events are prior to our holiday travels which will likely take up at least two weeks, include at least 4 family holiday dinners, visiting all sides of every family, and undoubtedly be filled with incredible joy and fun!

I am not stressed, I am excited!  This is the best type of schedule, and the best time of year.  I thrive on being busy, and when the cold, winter months loom, having so many fun plans helps me to get out of bed in the mornings, praise God, and get on with my day!

What are your holiday plans looking like?

Amongst all the events, parties and travels, there is one tiny little thing that has me a bit worried.  Or should we call it two.


It's no secret I have already fell of the wagon as of lately.  Less workouts, more desserts.  The holiday season has already begun and I am already experiencing the pressure of staying healthy during this time of year.  I remember specifically three years ago (pre-vegan days) traveling through the holidays and obsessively weighing myself at every stop.  It seemed each day I had gained another pound, and each stop added close to 5 on the scale.

I countered all the food I was eating with obsessive workouts, spending two hours at a time at the Y across the street from my FIL's (father-in-law) house.  Rather than balance my food intake, I attempted to just run it all off.  It was a failed plan.

While I want to stay healthy during the holidays, especially with all the travels, I also don't want to become obsessed with weight and workouts.  I would like to choose a more balanced approach to the holidays.  I don't want to have a strict plan either.  It would be awful to choose a workout over time with family if in a pinch.

So this year I'm taking a cue from Caitlin.  She recently posted her "pregnancy plan" and it seemed genius.  Because I'm not pregnant, and will have lots of holiday cookies to work off, I am upping the plan just a bit.  However, it still follows the same general premise.
Each week leading up to 2013 I will challenge myself to workout at least 4 times, with an optional bonus workout or two.  Notice there are no workouts filled in.  This leaves flexibility for my surroundings (in case I am in the middle-of-nowhere-Missouri and a walk through the woods is the only option).  It also offers a chance to choose my workouts based on how I feel that day.  Maybe I will be up for a long run, but perhaps 20 minutes on the elliptical is all I can muster on a dreary day.

This plan also does not define the days of the week I will be working out.  Again, leaving it open for flexibility.  There may be a Monday we are driving all day in the car and if I had a run scheduled I may wind up feeling guilty and lethargic for missing a workout.  This way, I can workout on the 4 days that are most convenient for my schedule.  Each week, as I complete a workout I will simply fill it into my spreadsheet.  It will challenge me enough while not overwhelming.

Of course we know that a workout plan is nothing without a balanced diet.  These mantras will get me through the next several weeks:

"Social Sweets Only"
"Eat what you love, leave what you like"
"Table, Plate, Chair" 
"Oh and by-the-way...you are vegan...leave that cake alone!"

That last one might not always work, but I'm banking on the three previous ones to help me.  No sneaking cookies at 2 in the afternoon, unless I'm having tea with a best friend.  When presented with a table full of goodies, I will go for the once-a-year treats such as Empire Cookies, and ditch the chocolate chip cookies for another time.  Lastly, focusing on filling a plate, sitting down and enjoying my food will keep me from hovering over the food table and grabbing small bites for an extended period of time.

These simple tools will likely make the holidays a healthy and enjoyable time.  With a balanced diet of greens and sweets and a loose workout plan, I will make it to 2013 with my sanity still intack (read: no endless trips to the scale to gauge just how much weight I had gained in a 2 hour period of time!)

What health mantras get you through the holidays?

1 comment:

  1. Tanya, this was a really great post. I am encouraged by your plan and would like to implement one myself. Thanks for the guidance. I only have one question-are you from the future?