About a year ago and change, I did an 180 degree personal overhaul of sorts. The end result months later? I lost about 12 lbs, went down a dress size and gained lean muscle. This goal was achieved through a series of milestones and adjustments over time. This holiday season I plan to plow ahead and stay fit no matter what. Today, I want to give you some of advice and tips on how to do “you” and your fitness without guilt and in a healthy way.
RULE #1 Get Your Weight Lifting On
Weights are an essential part of my routine. Cardio work is important to weight loss but weight lifting is what ultimately builds lean muscle. I lift weights 2x a week either through HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training) or regular circuit training and sometimes using an app. I love Nike Fit Club for workouts, you get some great routines for all levels. Since last year, I work out with a trainer at my gym. While I realize this is a splurge, for me this is an investment in my health. Some weeks, I do Muay Thai boxing classes or Zumba, I try to change it up some to challenge myself but weights are always there.
RULE #2 Plan Your Day
I work freelance as makeup artist. Being freelances means that my job can be unpredictable so I plan my workouts/ days when I can squeeze whatever I can. This is hard but achievable, as some days I get last minute jobs and this throws my plans into a tailspin just like my babysitting. Typically, I work out mornings and sometimes a day on the weekend. Having this “plan” makes me accountable to myself. It is also good to know how many days you are exercising, especially when you are trying to overhaul your fitness goals. Having a plan is a good way to get through the holidays, motivated, stress-free and guilty for indulging.
RULE #3 Stick To A Routine You Love
I found my “A-HA” exercise when I took a HIIT class. High Intensity Interval Training covers everything in one go, it is weights, aerobic exercise and short rest periods. In a nutshell, HIIT refers to intense exercise (90 to 100 percent effort) followed by a short rest period. Last year, I could barely workout for half an hour. This was part of what motivated me, I knew I could do better. I joined a bootcamp class first and once my body started responding to the stamina, I found a couple of gyms locally that offered training and classes. I love HIIT classes and am lucky I have great trainers who constantly change things up. Find something you love and stick to it, your body will thank you.
RULE #4 Food Matters
You are what you eat. Sorry for being the bearer of bad news but eating is 80% of your overall results. Trust me this was a hard pill to swallow for me, as I love food a lot. One way of eating which has helped me massively is eating little or no processed flour and incorporating gluten free options and adding more vegetables and fruits to my diet. During the holidays be mindful of your food intake, and use this time to maybe allow some indulgence without going crazy. Use applications like MyFitnessPal for example, this will help understand portions and calories, etc. I learned a lot about portions when I did Weight Watchers earlier in the year (as a sponsored opportunity). Currently, I try to eat more proteins for breakfast and my usual lean meat (fish or poultry for lunch) with a huge salad. I also embraced bringing healthy snacks to work. Food awareness is key to having a healthy holiday season without feeling guilty.
Lastly, I am part of an awesome group of lady bloggers who also love fitness and wellness. Together we decided to give you a linkup with the best advice and fitness tips for the holiday season, let us know what you think and be sure to check them out!