Meredith Nelson, M.Ed.
PrimeTime Fitness, Inc.
According to a recent study by a Cornell University professor, the average American is now at their lowest weight of the year. However, that’s all about to change, as the study showed that it’s highly likely for numbers on the scale to begin to creep upwards around the end of this month. Continuing to climb throughout the holidays, your weight will probably peak, and be at its highest, around New Year’s. Even more disheartening than that is that those extra pounds tend to stick around for an average of five months.
However, it doesn’t have to be this way – it is possible to take matters into your own hands right now, avoid those holiday pounds, and prove the study researchers wrong! Although we traditionally make resolutions to establish new behaviors in the new year, perhaps we should make those resolutions now, so that we get 2017 started off on the right foot!
That’s right – now is the time to establish a goal to make it successfully through the holidays without extra weight and added stress. It’s time to make “Year-End Resolutions” to eat right, exercise, get enough sleep, and manage stress over the next ten weeks! Here are some helpful tips on how you can take small steps towards achieving your “Year-End Resolutions:”
Eat right –
Take an extra hour over the weekend, or whenever you have (or can make) some extra time, to plan your meals for the week. Prepare a week’s worth of ready-made breakfasts (ask me about my overnight oatmeal-in-a-jar!), stock up on healthy snacks like cut up fruit or veggies and hummus, and make a list of ingredients to prepare 3 or 4 easy-to-make meals that you can double and have enough for leftovers. Make sure you drink lots of water – especially at parties when it becomes easy to forgo water for alcoholic beverages.
Put at least five days of exercise “appointments” in your day planner, Google calendar, or reminders every week. Keep those appointments just like you would with your hair stylist or physician. Visually seeing your workout plan allows you to see where there are any holes or gaps of time without exercise. Be sure to specify your workout for the day – for example “run,” “gym workout,” or “yoga.” This also helps you see if your workouts are lacking in variety!
Get enough sleep –
I just discovered “Bedtime” on my IPhone 6S. After setting my wake-up time – usually 5:00 a.m. – my IPhone establishes a “bedtime” based on how many hours of sleep I want to get (I try for at least seven hours nightly). A reminder is set to go off 15, 30, or 60 minutes prior to bedtime, letting me know it’s time to wind down.
Manage stress –
Start your holiday shopping now and get a head start on the rush. At the very least, make a list of people you want to buy gifts for. Chances are you will add to it before the holidays arrive, and decrease your chances of forgetting someone until the last minute.
Despite your best efforts, the holidays are sure to bring on stress at some point. Have a plan to manage your anxieties, whether it’s scheduling down-time with family, getting a massage, or making sure you get to that yoga class you love. (I’ve discovered the site www.doyogawithme.com for those times I just can’t make it to a class or don’t want to spend over an hour in the studio).
An extra tip –
I don’t usually encourage weighing yourself every day, but if you are serious about avoiding the average holiday weight gain of 7 – 10 pounds, start to weigh yourself regularly, or at least three or four times a week until the first of the year. You will see small changes as they occur and can take immediate steps to do better. No surprises come January 1!
Meredith Nelson, M.Ed, is the owner of PrimeTime Fitness, Inc, in Mt. Pleasant. Certified through AFAA in Group Fitness, ACE as a Personal Trainer and Medical Exercise Specialist, and TPI as a golf fitness professional, Meredith has been bringing fitness to the East Cooper area for over twenty years. Now located just across the causeway at 1558 Ben Sawyer Boulevard, PrimeTime Fitness caters to the mature exerciser and offers personal and small group training, indoor cycling, yoga, golf fitness training, monthly gym membership, and more. Meredith can be reached with your fitness questions at 843-883-0101, or Meredith@primetimefit.net.