How to Have A Healthy Relationship to Holiday Fitness

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Festive, Fun, Feel-Good Holiday Fitness

Many people talk about “burning off” holiday calories or exercising to earn their holiday treats. Well let me tell you: this mindset sets you up for a negative relationship to fitness and a lifetime of fighting for a healthy weight. Anytime the motivation to move or eat well comes from a place of guilt, shame, or fear, the outcome never leaves you feeling better long term. And who wants to live through the holidays feeling scared to gain weight? Shouldn’t it be a time of joy and celebration? Yes. And it all starts with shifting your mindset. 

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Christmas Morning Run. How I like to celebrate after seeing Santa 😉

It makes me sad to hear people equate sugar cookies consumed with number of burpees performed. Or over-exercise just to over-eat and make themselves sick. Eating well and exercise during the holiday season is about SO MUCH MORE than avoiding weight gain. It’s about :

– Having energy, stamina, and strength. From holiday parties to shopping, long days of cooking or socializing, you’ll have more power to do it all with quality fuel and exercise induced endorphin power. 

– Having a healthy way to bond with friends and family. One of my favorite ways to build positive relationships is through exercise and eating well. Preparing nourishing meals and making time to exercise with each other, supports both your relationship AND your health goals. Its all about how you choose to spend time with your loved ones. Together you can create an environment of support that embraces exercise and eating well in a positive light. If you want them to, your relationships CAN support you in your health.

Family Bonding over Making Strawberry Santa Hat Treats for the holidays

Family Bonding over Making Strawberry Santa Hat Treats for the holidays

– Managing the physical stress of traveling or unusual schedules. Nothing says back pain like a full schedule, the car, or airplane. A little bit of exercise goes a long way and helps you not feel so bent out of shape from long days. Healthy meals and snacks keep your digestion and mood on track despite unusual hours. Exercise and eating right helps you travel smart, manage long hours, and get around feeling your best. 

– Feeling confident at family/friend gatherings. You know that feeling you get after a workout? Or that satisfied sensation you experience after eating a nourishing meal? A million bucks, top of the world, happier than ever, ready to conquer? Yea I thought so. Me too. It’s that undeniable, unstoppable power that health gives you. It puts extra strength in every step and the confidence that gives all your holiday plans a little boost. 

– Finding calm, stress relief, and a better mental state. The holidays can be emotional, demanding, and challenging for many people. From dysfunctional family gatherings to running into ex-boyfriends or old memories, it’s a time of year that can bring up a lot of feelings. But when you take time for yourself and connect to the silence within you, that’s when you can make sense of any chaos going on around you. Exercise can be that space for you. It can give you time to clear your mind, feel your feelings, sort through your emotions, and find a better state of being. Simply by taking time out to take care of yourself will allow you to be your best and deal with any stress with a positive outlet. 

– Being more present and in the moment. Taking care of your health allows you to be conscious of how your body feels, what you put in your body, and what you put in your mind. Fitness is a practice of listening to your body and mindfully nourishing yourself with healthy foods and movement. Research has shown that being more present with how you care for your body can relieve stress, while also improving energy levels, memory and attention. Which in itself allows you to truly be present throughout the holiday season. 

I’m not saying NOT to indulge in your favorite holiday treats or take some well-deserved time off to hang in your christmas pjs over the holidays. Please DO! I believe in balance, listening to your body, and living life to the fullest. I just want to invite you to shift the way you look at exercise and eating over the holidays. Motivate from a place of gratefulness, health, and feeling your best. You deserve a life full of energy and strength to celebrate all the blessings in your life. Through moderation and choosing to look at health as a gift, I believe that you’ll drop the holiday “fight to fitness” and find yourself feeling your best. 

What gifts does exercise and eating well give YOU during the holiday season? Leave me one way you power up your holidays as a comment below.  Lets choose to be grateful, grounded, and happier through making exercise and eating well a positive, uplifting part of our lifestyle. 

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Heres to you, living a life you love.

Caroline

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