“It’s Christmas, I’ll have another drink, mince pie or Toblerone for breakfast”.Yes – we all let our hair down over the Christmas period and why not? We work hard, train well and allow ourselves some much needed relaxation and recovery time.

With the festive season upon us, that often means celebrating, eating and drinking –  and maybe a halt in your health and fitness plan. But have you really given some thought into how to enjoy the partying and still get back on track when January 1st rolls around?

If not, now is the time to get your thinking caps on, and trust me, it’s a lot more enjoyable than you think…

  1. Focus on what you can do, not what you can’t

Every year, we here a lot of people saying “I’ve just been so busy with Christmas, seeing friends, family that I find it so hard to commit to my training”. This year, change your attitude – focus on what you can do instead of what you can’t. Look for ways to fit something in, instead of repeatedly stressing over the things you cant do. This time of year is all about balance.

  1. Earn those Second Helpings

You shouldn’t need to feel like you have to go to the gym for hours and hours but you do need to work hard when you are there, especially if time is against you. Try and get some form of training or exercise in during this period, after you’ve eaten a meal, a nice walk with the family in the evening is a good idea.

  1. Stay Hydrated

Hangovers, indigestion and recovery – all part of the Christmas fun, right? Wrong. Most people don’t get enough water in throughout the day anyway, let alone at Christmas. Double the amount of water you would normally drink at Christmas and you may find yourself feeling more sprightly than usual (especially if you’re knocking back the bucks fizz). A common misconception of hunger is thirst, try and drink water consistently throughout the day and you’ll perhaps find yourself feeling fuller.

  1. Forget your routine – challenge yourself

If you don’t have the time you usually do for a full routine of workouts, don’t do it. Just exert yourself wherever you find the time and be creative with it. Your body responds to the challenge of exercise and anything is better than doing nothing.

  1. Portion Control

Monster portions are a very usually thing at most dinner tables on Christmas Day. A good tip is to eat a smaller breakfast, mainly consisting of protein, then give yourself most of your calories to consume later in the day, this will help you feel more in control and less guilty about going in for second or third helpings!

BONUS TIP: Christmas comes but once a year…

Christmas doesn’t catch us by surprise, turn up unannounced – you can plan for it if you want to! However, we’re rarely given the time to indulge, relax, spend time with those we love and not feel guilty about it. So perhaps the tip here is to find the right balance and enjoy yourself.

News headlines and the media may be full of news stories highlighting the weight thousands of us gain at Christmas – ignore them! Don’t think about weight gain this Christmas, think about celebrating with friends and family whilst enjoying the feeling of living in a body that’s healthy.

Following these top health tips can help you to change how you think at this time of year & we’ll help you make the right choices – even when a lot of people around you aren’t.