Building up your body for the onslaught of the festive (and flu) season is the key to a healthy and happy holiday.
The holidays can really take a toll, both mentally and physically. There's a good chance that your schedule will be thrown out of wack as you prepare for dinner parties, host friends and family, and run around shopping for gifts. Added to that stress is the temptation of holiday treats, like Christmas cookies or spiked eggnog, offered to you at every turn. During these times, you may find yourself getting away from your carefully maintained diet. And this is in addition to the reality that the holidays are flu season, which means your body is busy trying to fight off infection at the same time. To help combat all of these issues during the holidays, you should use the following tips to build your body up.
Build your bodyWith all that's going in your life, it can be easy to put your work out off until later - but if you do this, you'll quickly find that you've gone a few weeks without getting any exercise. Even if you feel like you're too busy to make it to the gym, make the time to at least go for a jog in the mornings. Not only will you be helping to counteract all of that holiday food, but you'll help to relieve some of that mental stress that might be building up as well - exercise is the best remedy for stress, after all. Because you might be indulging in larger holiday dinners with your family and friends, consider going for a long walk after your meal as well. Even walking is an effective form of exercise.
Boost your immune system
Your immune system is going to be working in over time during the holidays. You'll be interacting with more people, many of whom may have colds. The added stress of the holidays can make your immune system less effective as well, so be sure to do what you can to keep it strong. This includes making sure that you get a full night's rest every night, eating plenty of fruits and vegetables to counteract those sugary treats that you may be indulging in and by drinking plenty of water to remain hydrated and to flush the toxins from your body. Taking a health supplement, such as multivitamins or probiotics can also help give your immune system an extra boost.
Advance your mind
The holidays aren't just about stimulating your stomach. Use the holidays as an opportunity to spend more time with your friends and family. Plan gatherings or events with friends and family members, such as going ice skating or having a large holiday meal together, in order to strengthen your social ties. This kind of positive social interaction will help reduce your holiday stress.
Create your own zen
One of the most important things to keep in mind during the holidays is to not over do it. Give your brain a break once in a while so that it doesn't overload. Try to schedule some time to yourself everyday, whether it's to go for a short walk on your own, read a book for 30 minutes or even soak in the bathtub to allow yourself to unwind. And don't put more on your plate than you can eat - so don't worry about making 20 side dishes for Christmas dinner or inviting every one of your Facebook friends to stay at your home.
The holidays can be pretty tough on your body, both mentally and physically, so you'll want to be sure to build your body by continuing to exercise, strengthening your immune system and maintaining a positive and stress-free mental state.