Weight can gain during vacations, and unlike visiting relatives, you may never leave. According to our third annual survey on the holidays , the average American expects to gain seven pounds from holiday food, and 56 percent are using the holiday season as an excuse to postpone their healthy choices.

Here are some additional findings from the survey:

  • 61 percent feel they deserve a treat due to the stress of 2020.
  • 43 percent have eaten more than one dessert at a meal.
  • 45 percent have unbuttoned their pants for eating too much.
  • 30 percent have eaten until they feel sick, unwell and full to the point of bursting.

Since nutrition, mental health, and exercise all play a role in our overall well-being, it’s important to keep fitness in mind even while on vacation.

Keeping and motivated during the holidays

Of course, it’s not easy to let all the holiday cheer go by, but exercise and mindful eating can help you stay slim and healthy and avoid gaining weight. Here are my favorite tools and tricks to stay on track for my vacation fitness goals:

Be creative.

Use items at home to add extra weighted resistance to your workouts. For example, books in a backpack are a great practical way to add weight to your squats. Water-filled laundry detergent containers work great as a substitute for a kettlebell, and a towel on a hard surface works well in place of sliding discs. Adding weight to your routine helps you build lean muscle, which is great not only for a toned appearance, but also for boosting your metabolism.

Track your progress to motivate yourself.

Consider purchasing a device that measures your progress. Having the ability to monitor your daily, weekly or monthly activity levels makes it easier to achieve your goals. An inexpensive item like a pedometer can be effective, and of course there are the more technical options that cost a bit more, like Garmin, Fit Bits, and Apple Watches, which allow you to add an element of competition with your family and friends.

Improve your angles.

Changing the angle of an exercise can help put additional stress on specific muscles. For example, doing a push-up with your feet elevated puts more pressure on your chest muscles. The same is true to make exercises easier for beginners, doing a push-up with a table or placing your hands on a wall to keep your feet under your chest will reduce gravity and make exercising easier.

Try free online trainings.

Exercising in combination with balanced nutrition will improve your overall sense of well-being, your body composition, and positively impact your self-esteem. Free workouts available online give you the flexibility to exercise at a time of day that is most convenient for you.

Listen to new music.

There’s nothing like fun, and new music can give you that boost to get off the couch, run that extra mile on the treadmill, or finish a weight training session. Download new songs, exchange playlists with a friend, or rearrange your existing library to keep your workouts interesting.

Renew your running shoes.

Poor weather conditions can make the floor slippery, so it is important to have good running shoes at this time of year. Look for new models during the holidays and take advantage of all those Christmas sales.

Run in reflective clothing.

Winter nights come early and are cold. When you invest in warm running clothing with reflective panels or strips, you’ll be safer and warmer during your outdoor workout.

Wears mini elastic bands.

Inexpensive mini elastic bands, which come in various resistance levels, can be your best friend for warming up hips, glutes, shoulders, and back, or you can use them for a quick and effective resistance routine.

Jump the rope.

Jumping rope is a good, simple way to warm up and get your heart rate up. Warming up for 10 minutes can also help prevent injury. You can use an interval style training method and use your jump rope for your entire routine.

Everything you do to stay focused on your fitness before and during the holidays will help you afterward. Consider every good choice you make as a gift to your future self.

Control hunger with protein snacks

In addition to mindful eating, eating a healthy, protein-rich snack before attending the holidays will help you feel full, avoid unnecessary snacking, and give you a little boost of energy.

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