Tips for athletes to stay healthy during the holiday season

5 Tips Athletes Can Follow to Stay Healthy While Enjoying The Holidays

Here are a few tips for staying healthy while also balancing the spirit of enjoyment during the holidays!

Once the holiday season rolls around, refrigerators are filled with food, evenings are booked with celebratory meals, and usual routines start to change. This is all normal — the holiday season is usually the busiest, yet also the happiest time of the year. But with all the eating, celebrating, and enjoying, it can be easy to think about how you can stay on track with your fitness goals, especially for athletes.

While there is not one easy answer to this, we’ve got a few tips that might help you stay healthy with your training and diet regimens, while also allowing yourself to be fully present during the holiday celebrations!

1. Do your workouts before the festivities
5 Tips That Can Help Athletes Stay Healthy While Enjoying The Holidays
(Photo credit: Pexels)

Holiday schedules can be very busy, and while we think it’s perfectly fine to miss a training day or two, if you feel the need to work out amidst all your holiday events, our first tip would be to schedule your training sessions before the festivities.

Booking all your training hours and workout days in advance will help you stay on track, get them out of the way, and relieve stress, so you can be totally in the moment with your loved ones during the holiday season!

And for anyone who feels the need to exercise so they can eat, this is your reminder that you don’t need to “earn” your food. A few festive meals won’t derail your progress — enjoy the holidays by eating what you want without feeling guilty!

2. Now’s a great time for strength training
(Photo credit: Victor Freitas)

If you choose to work out during the holiday season, now’s a great time to prioritize your strength training.

With all the delicious food you’ll enjoy on Noche Buena, Christmas Day, and even during your New Year’s celebrations, you can use all those nutrients to build muscle! Focusing on lifting weights, strength movements, and other similar forms of training can help you build more metabolism in the long run, too.

3. Prioritize protein and micronutrients
5 Tips That Can Help Athletes Stay Healthy While Enjoying The Holidays
(Photo credit: Pexels)

When you’re going through your holiday spreads, we do not recommend skipping the carbs. Go ahead and enjoy whatever is calling out to you! But if you still want to take a little extra mindfulness into what you’re eating, then you can prioritize eating your protein and fiber to give your body what it needs even while you enjoy.

Don’t take this tip the wrong way — remind yourself that you don’t need to restrict yourself too much during your holiday celebrations, but you can sprinkle in the values of your usual healthy routine.

4. Listen to your body
5 Tips That Can Help Athletes Stay Healthy While Enjoying The Holidays
(Photo credit: Freepik)

The holiday season, as festive and enjoyable as it is, can also get really tiring sometimes. Being out with your loved ones and staying up late frequently can catch up with you. So once the festivities are over, don’t force yourself to get back into your training regimen right away.

If you wake up feeling like you need more rest, or if you feel mentally drained, or if you just need a little extra time to get back into the swing of things, honor all of that. Don’t stress out and force yourself into a workout your body might not be ready for.

5. Don’t forget to celebrate!
(Photo credit: Askar Abayev)

If all else fails, just remember to enjoy this season!

A few heavy meals won’t make you unhealthy and missing a few workouts won’t derail your progress. As best as you can, try not to stress out on the little things this time of the year. Use it, instead, as a way of celebrating everything you’ve achieved in the past year and getting ready for another amazing year ahead.

The holidays are short and go by very quickly, so soak in every minute of it and trust that you’ll come back into your normal routine in no time!

Banner image from Nicole Michalou.

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