Healthy Holiday Food and Activity Tips and Hacks
Everyone writes about being healthy for the holidays. Heck, I did it about healthy travel over Thanksgiving! But with holiday season upon us, it’s never a bad thing to refresh your memory on how to stay active, healthy and happy over the course of the next two weeks. And you’ll want to scroll to the bottom to check out our #ConsummateAthleteChristmas Challenge! (You can also hear all about it on today’s Q&A episode of The Consummate Athlete Podcast where we tackle healthy holidays, New Year’s Resolutions, race day jitters and tri bike issues.)
Always Be Packin’
Workout gear, anyway. Anytime we go to a family function or to visit friends, I make sure I have leggings, a workout top and my sneakers packed in a bag. That way, I’m always ready to sneak in a quick run or workout, or even just go on a long walk a bit comfier. (Pack your run essentials with this list here.)
Christmas AM Run
A decade ago, I saw a Frazz comic strip where every Christmas morning, while it’s still dark and everyone’s holiday lights are on and twinkling, he goes out for a solo run in the absolute quiet. (I love Frazz’s creator, he’s a cycling nerd and occasionally drops riders like Ryan Trebon into his well-known comic! He also does the Christmas run bit every single December 25th.) I wasn’t even a runner when I saw that comic, but I loved it so much, I did it that year. And that was genuinely a big reason I started running. Little habits/holiday rituals like that all add up into a decent amount of activity. Make it a Christmas day ritual to go on a morning walk, or have a family snowball fight—just make activity part of the holiday.
Try Our 500 Minutes of Movement Challenge
Over on The Consummate Athlete Podcast, we’ve challenged listeners and those of you who follow The Outdoor Edit and SmartAthlete to set a goal of 500 minutes of movement. We’re challenging you to aim for 500 minutes of MOVEMENT. This could be a family walk/hike, Yoga with a friend, your workout of the day, strength or getting out cross-country skiing. You choose just aim for 63 minutes for each day this 8 day holiday week (December 24 – Dec 31s). It is a tough goal… but also flexible to shift your time around and your sport/intensity. Let’s make this an active holiday! Find details and feel free to post your adventures to the Consummate Athlete Facebook Page. Use the Hashtag #ConsummateAthleteChristmas, and the best photos/posts/adventures can get prizes from nuun and Clif Bar, a copy of “Fuel Your Ride,” a copy of “Saddle, Sore,” and a three-month training plan are all up for grabs!
Stay the Course
(Within reason.) Sure, your training block might be a bit deterred by family plans, and you might be eating a few extra snacks. But when you can, make sure you’re living as normally as possible. That means eating your standard healthy breakfast, lunch and dinner when you’re not partying—and even aiming for extra veggies and big salads as meals when you have the option. And doing daily routine like my early morning yoga is fantastic: for me, I know that 15 minutes of core and stretching early in the day guarantees that I’ve moved a bit, and it usually makes me feel like getting in a quick run later.
Cure a Hangover
Let’s be honest, the number one reason most of us aren’t hitting the gym on December 26th or January 1st is that we’re a little under the weather. While obviously, the best solution isn’t drinking a ton in the first place, if you know you’ve gone overboard, a little prevention is worth a pound of cure. I set up a cup in the bathroom with nuun tablets and Chloroxygen next to it. When I get home, before I head to bed, I drink one cup of water with Chloroxygen—a chlorella drink that boosts oxygen in the blood and somehow really helps smooth over rough edges in the morning. Then, I drink another huge glass with a nuun tablet in it, to rebalance electrolytes. (I do nuun again first thing in the morning as well—then I go for a walk and get some fresh air!)