Staying Healthy During the Holidays

staying healthy is a life long journey. our motivation from earlier this year.

The holidays are busy and stressful enough, throw in all the eating, and I am one hot mess.  Did I just say "hot mess?"  Well, some days I feel that way.  I compiled a little list of things that I am doing right now to try to stay healthy this month that will hopefully jump start me into 2012 continuing with some healthy habits.

Convenience Food

When caught up in a busy day, having something convenient and healthy to grab is sooo helpful.  I have been a lunch time soup eater for a couple years now and it has gotten old.  I recently picked up a few "boxed" lunches...Smart Ones, Lean Cuisine, etc. to help mix up my afternoon lunch woes.  When I have a thousand things I want to do that day, being able to throw something into the microwave is so nice.  Not to mention that eating something warm on a chilly day is so comforting.  I am also allowing myself to pick up a salad at Wendy's or McDonald's when I am out and about.  I usually do not like spending money on convenience food, but right now the ease of not having to cook something and keeping within a lower calorie count makes it worth the extra money.  I am also keeping homemade trail mix in the car and grabbing an apple or Luna bar for the day so that I always have something to snack on if I am out longer than planned. 

Drinking More Water

I am a pretty good water drinker overall but I decided I needed to step it up a notch.  I fill up my Nalgene bottle for my morning work out and I am also leaving out a glass to continually fill up during the day when I am at home.  Not only it is helpful in keeping me filled up {we often mistaken feeling hungry with thirst} but it also helps with bloating {during the holidays it is really hard to say no to dairy products even though I am lactose intolerant}.  I love feeling like I am flushing everything out and it keeps me reminded throughout the day to make healthy choices.  I also use MyFitnessPal to log in my calories and my water consumption {If you use MFP and want to "friend" me I am AshleyUrke.  MFP is a place to log calories that is also an app on my phone so I can log in wherever I am at}.  Having a place to log in this information keeps me focused and counting.

Getting to the Gym

It can be really easy to let my busy day or a little cold keep me from getting to the gym.  I was sick last week and took part of the week off, but once I was rested up it was time to get back with it.  It is so tempting to want to put my to do list ahead of my workout but I know come January I will be grateful I kept up my workout.  I will find time to finish shopping or get the house cleaned, but getting in that workout is a lot harder to do!  I have read from a handful of bloggers who do light workouts at home and are able to stay in shape.  I don't know about you, but I like to eat, and so getting in a higher cardio workout is a must for me.  Staying in shape is NOT easy...I work very hard.  Don't let those skinny girls who eat nothing fool you! You have seen my ice cream cake haven't you?  Gotta burn that baby off!  ;)

Staying Accountable

During the holidays there are a lot of people who are more than happy to shove delicious desserts down your throat filled with way too many calories {too harsh? you have not meant some of my family then!}.  And there are a lot of people who rationalize their health for temporary satisfaction.  It is hard to stay on track when people are giving you a hard time.  I recently decided that I cannot stay focused on my own and that asking my husband to do so was not always the best idea {husband-"You shouldn't eat that cookie.  You told me to help you." Me {crying}-"Why, do you think I am fat!  I hate you!"  Get what I am saying...}.  As a result I sought out one of my bff's for a weekly phone call {hey Jahmese!}.  We both have a similar struggle {we both work out hard and love food} and can understand and relate with each other.  I have also started to better befriend some people from the gym who I can talk about with these things.  Not everyone understands what you are going through...some think it is not a big deal while others think you need to go see a counselor...find people that get you and can support you, especially this holiday season.

Provide Healthy Food at Holiday Parties

When I throw parties, I love a mix of healthy food and not healthy food.  I like to feel like I can indulge a little on dessert, but I don't want to compromise that by eating a bad dinner.  I have been told by other calorie conscious friends that they look forward to parties at our house because they know I offer various options.  And if you are attending a party, bring a plate of fruit or veggies.  Provide something you know you will feel comfortable eating and that way you can steal a nibble of this and that and not feel like your whole diet is shot.

I could go on and on but this is not a health blog so I will stop.  Health and diet {not to be confused with dieting} are a large part of my life that I do not blog very much about.  Love it?  Hate it?  I would love to incorporate more but not sure if you all want me to just shut up and show you pictures of my house.  Let me know what you think.

All this to say, what are your healthy holiday tips?