The holiday season is truly the most beautiful time of the year. It’s a period of time that you are meant to spend in rest and relaxation. Conveniently enough, it’s right at the end of the year, so you can recharge your batteries for the next season. However, this doesn’t apply to everyone. A true lifter knows that losing just few weeks could mean a serious setback and that it would take months later on just to make up for this short break. Still, this doesn’t mean that as a lifter, you’re not entitled to a bit of rest. Here are few tips on how to treat yourself a bit during the holiday season without noticeably falling behind.
Optimal Holiday Plate
First thing first, everyone knows that during holidays, people tend to overeat, which can be particularly troublesome for serious lifters. On one hand, holiday meals are known for being filled with guilty pleasure food, but what’s the point of all that exercise if you can’t let yourself loose at least every once in a while. Luckily, there’s a compromise. You see, some meals, like turkey, ham, mashed potatoes and cornbread can find their place in your plate if you manage to balance your meals out.
Naturally, there are some ground rules you have to set. If you expect to have a holiday meal, the best course of action is to hit the gym and train hard one hour prior to this. Next, eat all the rest of your daily meals according to your diet and do a good macro management of your meals.
Split your dish in three equal portions. One should consist of protein rich foods like turkey, ham and eggs. Another part should be made of salads and greens, here you don’t have to ration anything. Finally, you have vegetables with a higher caloric value like sweet potatoes or rice. Needless to say, the intake of these foods should be reduced to a minimum (even though you should never skip them altogether). Even sweet potatoes have their place on the lifter’s menu.
Proper Game Plan
As we’ve already mentioned, you’re allowed to catch a small break in your diet during a holiday season, but you will have to make up for it both before and after. Before the holidays begin, you may want to slightly increase the intensity of your trainings. It also means training at least four times a week. Afterwards, your main goal will be shedding the holiday fat. For this, you will need to make a solid game plan consisting of three cardio days and four regular gym workouts per week. For cardio, your best choice is a 45-minute long basketball or football session, while for your gym days you need to make a proper schedule.
Finally, overeating is not the only reason why people can’t wait for holidays to begin. Another reason is that it is a season of presents. No matter how old someone is or how tough they look, everyone loves presents. Because of this, you may want to buy yourself brand-new gym gear. Treat yourself with quality gym shoes, a bag or a weightlifting belt. They’ll serve as both welcome accessories and a reminder that even at this hour you need to think about your workouts. They can also serve as an incentive to hit the gym with a rekindled enthusiasm in order to try out these new gifts in practice.
Being a lifter isn’t just about training and eating properly, it’s about changing your lifestyle for good. Unlike people who are just looking to lose some weight, tone their muscles a bit or even bulk up, you don’t have the end goal. You lift not only because it makes you look good, but because of the way it makes you feel. That’s why everything else in your life comes second. However, this doesn’t necessarily mean that you cannot allow yourself to blow off some steam every once in a while, and what better time to do so than during the most joyous part of the year.