~ by: Patty Gale
It’s THAT time of year again! Jingle bells, holiday parties and pretty soon those Christmas cookies, pies and cakes are going to be calling your name. Hey, I’m Italian so I totally get it. I grew up with insane amounts of Italian Christmas cookies, pastries and desserts. And even now, I get to make them as gifts for family and friends.
Oh, the temptation!
So, how do you keep your sanity this time of year while also keeping your fitness in check at the same time? You’re probably thinking, ‘easier said than done.’
Here are my 5 tips to help you get through the holidays without getting off track. You’ll be so proud of yourself come January, trust me!
Write These Down and Let’s Do This…
- Surround yourself with successful and upbeat people who will encourage you. The influence other people have over our personal energy is astounding. Moods and attitudes are contagious – think about how often a simple smile from a stranger can make a difference for your day. Then multiply that by 1000 times to show how powerful positive attitudes of and successful friends, family and associates are when you are around them.
When you have people around you who inspire you, believe in you and want you to succeed, there’s very little, or any, room for doubt. Even if they do manage to creep in from time to time, they’re gone as fast as they came in.
- Create a mantra or a daily fitness affirmations. Repeating positive affirmations has been shown to get people through tough times and to actually help them truly believe what they’re saying. We call these “I AM” statements. The subconscious mind doesn’t know the difference between what has happened and what has not happened yet.
For example, ‘I am building a strong and healthy me.’ Many successful people have used these ‘I AM’ statements to keep them moving forward. Start with a list and write them down, carry them with you or put them up on the mirror in your bathroom. When you see them every day, it becomes repetitive, and becomes a habit that becomes part of your daily life.
- Capture negative thoughts and words and take them out of your vocabulary. We all have dis-confirming ideas from time to time. However, negative thoughts and emotions can derail us and keep us from accomplishing what we want. Small words like “but” or “don’t” can take a positive thought and turn it into a negative thought.
Here’s what I mean. Let’s say you’re swamped with work and finding it really difficult to get outside for a workout or to the gym. You might be thinking, “I really want to go workout, but I have too much going on this week.”
That doesn’t sound like a very firm statement, does it? Let’s turn that around to say,
“I will get my workout in as my time is my own.” See the difference?
Of course, catching those negative thoughts takes practice and persistence. When you find yourself thinking negative thoughts or having negative emotions, find a trigger to convert them to a positive thought. And when you do get outside to go for a power walk or run, you’ll find it will really help improve your mood… accomplishing two awesome things at once. I know running totally clears my head.
- Set goals/intentions and then be willing to let it go. We attract what we focus on. However, despair sends mixed messages and a lot of negativity. Determine your goals and intentions and then let them go. You’ll be surprised at what happens when you allow yourself to have faith in what you can do. Go ahead, give it a try.
- Be thankful. Gratitude is possibly the single most powerful and positive tool for success. When you are thankful for all of the fantastic things and people in your life, the challenges you face appear significantly less important and are more easily dealt with.
Think about starting and keeping a gratitude journal along with a fitness journal and get into the habit of writing in them every day. That way, when you are confronting challenges, a quick glance at all the amazing things in your life will make you feel as if you can undertake anything. Additionally, an attitude of gratitude assists you keep a positive perspective and to face challenges as opportunities instead of obstacles.
It’s O.K. to Eat a Few Cookies
It’s the holidays. It’s o.k. to eat a few cookies and treats during this time of year. What I don’t believe in is depriving yourself. Keep your workouts in check, staying as consistent as you can and you’ll be so happy with yourself come January.
You can do it, I know you can!