How to have a happy and healthy holiday

By David Wojtkowski

The holiday season tends to throw a wrench into diet plans.  With the one-two punch of Thanksgiving and Christmas back to back there is always a plethora of delicious holiday treats to tempt one off their diet.  This is a guide to help you partake in the festivities without having it set your fitness goals back too much.

One of the most important things to keep track of is the number of calories you are consuming.  The only way to put on weight is by taking in more calories than you burn off, so if you want to make sure you don’t rack up the pounds, keep track to how many calories you take in.  A good way to do this is by looking at the nutritional facts label for the dishes you’ll be enjoying. You could also look it up online or use apps like MyFitnessPal to find out how many calories are likely in your family member’s dish if they didn’t happen to bring the nutrition sheets with them.  Once you account for how many calories over the amount you burn off you are eating, you know how many more calories you need to burn off. And doing cardio is a great way to shed those calories off. Luckily most cardio equipment in gyms comes equipped with a handy calorie counter so you can make sure you’re burning off things like cranberry sauce, holiday pot roasts and Christmas cookies.

But sometimes during the holiday season you can’t always make it to a gym.  It might be closed or difficult to travel to with all the snow falling from the sky.  In this case, there are multiple ways you can have technology assist you in burning off those extra calories.  If you find an Apple Watch or Fitbit underneath your Christmas tree this year you can strap in on and it will actually tell you how many calories you are burning throughout the day.  And websites like mapmyrun.com are great for finding running routes around you, it’ll tell you the distance traveled and even the level of elevation throughout the route. Be sure to bundle up and watch out for ice on your winter runs and you should have no problem burning those extra holiday calories off.

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