One of the biggest winter vacation temptations is to go wild on food, parties and excessive (or close to none) sleep, coupled with a lack of proper exercise or simple walks out. This way, all the new year resolutions about finally getting in shape and staying that way will go to waste, right? Find out how to keep true to your promises and survive the winter vacation.
While this may seem obvious, we are all sometimes vary of keeping to a healthy diet during vacations. "Well, junk food is just for one party", which later actually becomes a string of parties, visits to friends and relatives, hangover brunches...You won't notice the vacation crawl to an end, but no wonder if you meet it with a pack of french fries in your hand. To eliminate this scenario, plan your meals ahead. Whether it is your special diet for weight loss or a usual meal, be sure to have the idea (and the ingredients if you cook, of course) in your mind before going wild on parties. Chances are, if you put a bowl of chicken soup and rice away in the fridge for the morning, you won't have to temp yourself with ordering in a pizza or wok.
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Then, whether you are a party-goer or not, try to avoid comfort food in excess amounts. Winter colds urge our bodies to make the environment as cozy as possible, including our comfort foods – which commonly are pizzas, mac and cheese, burgers etc. While indulging in those once in a while is completely okay, make sure you rather eat a cup of soup or a healthy snack like a salad when the urge arises.
Finally, while winter might not be abundant on berries or tomatoes, don't miss the season fruits and vegetables! Main providers of the vitamin C, such as oranges, grapefruit, kiwi and pomegranates are all available in the shops and cost less than non-seasonal fruits. As for vegetables, try to include turnips, onions, kale and sweet potatoes in your meals. Apart from this, don't skip on vitamin D. It's well-known that in winter human bodies receive less "sunshine" vitamin, which can lead to general feeling flacky, and even a serious seasonal depression disorder. That's why, stock on orange juice, tuna, salmon and eggs. It will keep both your vitamin balance and budget steady.
If you have purchased a gym membership as one of your new year resolutions to finally spend at least two evenings a week on the treadmill, you have solved half of the problem. Usually, commitment like this lasts a while, at least because you don't want to waste the money you spent. Motivation, of course, can be evasive and hard to show up. We suggest you find a quote, or a bunch of quotes, to keep your spirits up on the days you decided to dedicate to working out. One of the phrases that proves to work for many is "Later you wish you'd started earlier", which is brutally honest and true.
There are some simple tricks how to prepare your body and mind to physical training, even if you are a complete rookie.
Firstly, have a contrast shower in the morning. Not only it promotes work of the heart and keeps skin in better condition, but helps you to shake off the remnants of sleep and raise alertness. You may even find yourself preferring simply cold showers in time.
Secondly, take every chance of catching a bit of sunlight outside. Brisk walks in a nearby park, changing a typical route to the bus or metro station and even simple grocery shopping all add up to the general feeling of being fit. With gradual increase of such walks you will be prepared to take on the treadmill without initial shock.
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Finally, keep your meals and workout plan strictly planned. It doesn't mean that if you catch a cold you have to sweat on cardio, but a consistent plan and general understanding of how this or that exercise or meal will contribute to your wellness can be enough of the motivation and discipline. There are plenty of apps that help you plan the day's meal and workout, and smartphones have long learned to count your steps and track your physical activity. You can also consult a specialist who will lay out a detailed plan, according to your desires and available schedule. If you feel that you aren't ready to hit the gym yet, try baby steps – home workouts are just as fine.
Even if the New Year vacation plans didn't include anything besides Netflix and ordering in, you may find yourself unexpectedly revolving in a row of parties, get-togethers with friends and corporate nights out with colleagues. Let's face it, this is just how it happens. One pint of beer becomes another and another, and coupled with traditional New Year's drink champagne it doesn't do any good the next morning. The best way to prevent hangover, is, of course, to stay away from alcohol. If you find yourself prone to get drunk easily, one glass of champagne for a toast will be just enough, keeping in mind that this bubbly and fizzy drink is quite vicious in large amounts. Whatever your preferred drink choice, make sure you stay in fair consciousness. Take walks from time to time to see for the tell-tale signs of getting fritz: head spinning, light nausea, mood swings or coordination loss. If you feel any of these, it's high time to get yourself a warm glass of water and order a taxi.
One of the basic, yet important tips – be sure to eat foods rich with fat and protein. Whether you do it during or after drinking, they help to soak up alcohol in your body and help immensely. In fact, beer is often accompanied by sausage rolls for this exact reason!
Yet another common fact that can save lives – pair your drinks wisely. Do not, under any circumstances, mix up drinks like rum or whiskey and beer; avoid sugary drinks and alcohol, as it'll spike up your sugar and make you feel even more drunk; check alcohol by volume in a cocktail you're about to order. To keep it short, think before you drink.
Finally, water is your best friend on any occasion. Take a glass of warm water between the drinks to get rid of the buzzing, and afterwards – to soothe the stomach.
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