The holiday season can wreak havoc on maintaining any kind of structured training plan. Even when you make a solid commitment to staying fit through the holidays, even the best made training plans go awry.
Holiday parties, work demands, family obligations, illness, injury, and weather challenges all take a toll on training. How do you make the best of it? Stress out? Freak out? Beat yourself up? No! Get your game on with strategies to survive the holiday season. These strategies will help you maintain fitness, manage your weight, and set you up right for the New Year.
Strategy 1: Eat Well. The holidays offer irresistible food temptations adding extra pounds to our waste lines and robbing us of precious energy. Instead of reaching for the holiday goodies, opt for nutritious snacks. Eating poorly during the holidays can affect mood and motivation towards training. Focus on good nutrition and choose your bike nutrition when you need it most- on the bike. Being mindful of your food choices can positively affect your energy levels and help maintain your ability to ride and perform better.
Strategy 2: Log your intake and outtake. Many cyclist already track mileage or training time, but consider keeping a food log to track your caloric intake as well. A free and favorite app to help do this is Lose It! Users get a customized weight loss plan and then use the app to track food, measure activity levels, and connect with peers for group support to reach their goals. A great way to stay motivated to eat right. An added gain, is that it can sync up with most of the popular fitness tracking devices and wireless scales on the market. It also has a large food database for easy reference making it easy to track your caloric intake on the go.
Strategy 3: Maintain focus and control. The flurry of holiday activities makes time precious. You may not have time for a lengthy ride, so make the most of the time you do have. Increase your focus. Focus on what you can control and let go of things beyond your control. What can you control? The intensity, duration, and consistencies of your workouts. You can also control the elements surrounding your training, as in, your bike parts, bike functioning, and being well prepared nutritionally to get the best out of your workouts.
Strategy 4: Buddy Up! Use the ride to catch up with friends, training partners, and others. Ride with friends, join a spin class, or host your own trainer session. Committing to a time, place, and a friend creates structure keeping some consistency to your training.
Strategy 5: Relax: If you just can’t find the time or motivation to ride during the holiday season, at least feed your velo passion with pictures of new road bikes , new mountain bikes, and cool bike parts. It will feed your spirit and breathe life into next year’s bike season. In fact, the post, Missing training – Adjusting the plan, reminds us, “ It’s easy to beat yourself up over missed training, but if you have been steady with training, give yourself a break. Gaining fitness doesn’t happen in one or two days and losing fitness doesn’t happen in one or two days. It takes months of steady training to gain good fitness. A few days missed or logging a fewer less hours than planned for a week is a small blip on the radar.”
There you have it! Strategies to survive the holidays. Maintaining a holiday fitness plan doesn’t have be hard. Be flexible, mix it up, and enjoy!
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