The holidays are upon us ladies and gentlemen. Sweets, feasts, hot chocolate and plenty of snacks in bed are calling our names. Who wants to go outside in the cold when you can snack at home snuggled in a warm blanket watching your favorite holiday movie? There are certainty more temptations to be lazy and binge eat sweets during the wintertime than any other season of the year. The bikinis are put away and the summer body is history until the springtime, right? At least that’s what most people like to tell themselves.

In my defense, I believe that staying fit and eating healthy should be a yearly desire and habit. I care about my body and how I feel about myself when I look in the mirror. Whether it is in the summer or the winter, I make sure that I am keeping my sweets and junk food minimal and my exercise daily. Most people like to think that they are health conscious, but I certainly take action on it.

Not always, but I have the ability to look at a cupcake or another scoop of mashed potatoes and say no knowing that I’ll regret it immediately afterward. I know that I don’t need another cupcake, I just want it. But then again, I’m still like most people. I love food and I get extra lazy during the winter.

Keeping up with staying away from the extra calories that are easily preventable can be difficult with the all the delicious foods and snacks that I could but shouldn’t be eating at my disposal. The holidays tempt me to drink a Pumpkin Spice Latte from Starbucks every morning, to dive into the delicious pies at family parties and to stuff my face with all the turkey, stuffing and mashed potatoes that I can take on in one sitting.

Once a year I tell myself that’s acceptable.

But most times, it’s not a once a year thing. Don’t get into the habit of telling yourself that pigging out for this one meal is okay because it won’t end up being a once in awhile thing. Once you start telling yourself that this meal is okay to pig out on, you’ll start telling yourself that the next meal is also okay. Don’t put yourself into that dark hole that is extremely hard to get out of. Gaining one or two pounds may not seem like a lot, but it’s much easier to gain that weight than it is to drop it.

This graph shows the percent change of weight gain pre, during and post holiday, indicating that most weight gain occurs within 1 kg.

With the series of holidays one after another, my binge eating meal at Thanksgiving turns into another binge eating meal at Christmas and then New Years.

It’s time to put that will power into full beast mode and say no to that third cookie staring at you from across the table. I love to go to the gym, but it’s often just too cold to even open the door and get myself there. That isn’t an excuse to lay back in bed and watch Netflix all night with a mug of hot chocolate and marshmallows.

You don’t need a gym to be active.

Blast your music and have a dance party in your room! Squats, push ups, sit ups, lunges, jumping jacks and calf raises are only some of the basic exercises that anybody can do without having to leave their room.

Personally, I know that if I don’t go to the gym to start my day, I won’t go at all. Being at home for winter break from college, my days are as lazy and unproductive as it gets, so everyday I have the opportunity and temptation to watch movies and eat in bed all day. But if it is one of those days where leaving the house is the absolute last thing on my agenda, I’ll do some exercises at home.

I have music playing all the time so when I need to do some squats, I sit in front of my mirror, turn my speakers up and squat away. I’m not saying to ditch the sweets and holiday favorites, but to moderate the amount that you put into your diet during this time of year with exercise and other healthy alternatives. Don’t cave completely into the holiday temptations and laziness, because staying healthy and fit should be a yearly motivation, not seasonal.

Story by Emily Kim

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