5 tips for holiday success

The winter break for Christmas and New Year’s should be in harmony with rest, relaxation and calm. However, the holidays can be just the opposite for many.

Here are 5 tips for holiday success:

Above all, stay active and keep moving. The photos found between the covers of holidays magazines show copious servings of fatty, sweet and smothered foods, in addition to couples cocooning in blankets near the fire. All of this comes with the holiday season and it’s important to enjoy, but in moderation. Even more important still, be sure not to neglect physical activity during this period. It will enable you to alleviate stress and worry, it’s even recommended to increase the frequency and intensity of your workouts to burn off those extra calories.

Beware of overeating. It’s so easy to fall into the trap. Most holiday activities are based on food. The dishes are numerous, appetizing and abundant. Beware of going overboard! They can cause digestive problems, gastric reflux, indigestion and if alcohol is involved, a headache caused mainly by dehydration. A few tips: Eat slowly, limit your portions of meats, sauces, fried foods, desserts and opt for healthy portions of vegetables instead. If you decide to consume alcohol, proceed with moderation and drink water in alternation.

Proper hygiene. Even if Covid is (almost!) behind us, it’s still in good practice to follow the rules of basic hygiene. After all, it is the cold and flu season. Wash your hands regularly and if you’re hosting, limit the risks of food poisoning. Take care not to leave raw meats on the counter for too long. Ensure that everything is properly cooked and ensure no dishes were left out too long the day after hosting a meal.

An invitation is not an obligation. Respect your limits and your personal space. Invitations can be numerous and cause more stress. Don’t feel obligated to accept every single one, it’s OK to decline and schedule them for another time. Prioritize seeing those your hold dear and don’t feel bad for taking some much-needed time for yourself.

Be realistic in your planning. Are you hosting this year? It’s OK if everything isn’t absolutely perfect. Ask for help from family members with the housework and in making your home feel welcoming. Opt to have the meal catered instead. Ask the guests to prepare a dish. Avoid unrealistic expectations. Between a busy fall of working and with the New Year right around the corner, the holidays should be a time of rest, quality time with loved ones and sports, instead of being synonymous with frenzy, anxiety and running from store to store… Remind yourself that you are the only one who can make this holiday season a true success! To your health!

By Roger Lemay