Christmas has come and gone, the New Year is here to stay. It will be cold in most of the United States for a few more months. The cold weather can make it more challenging to maintain our healthy lifestyle. Putting on layers, avoiding icy spots, the endless lure of your warm blanket you worked so hard to get just right that will never feel the same if you get up for just one minute into the cold, frigid air also known as your house. Let us not succumb to the comfort of our blankets as our waistlines increase. Let’s stay fit! Here is a short list of a few ways to maintain strong bodies and minds through the winter.
Stay Active. As previously mentioned, the cold and sometimes wet weather can make exercise and staying fit more of a challenge. Luckily, your gym membership works year round. To maintain your weight and fitness level, complete at least 150 minutes of exercise per week. These 150 minutes can be split up over several days and can be split up within each day as well. If you live somewhere with an abundance of snow, there are many activities to stay fit well enjoying that white snow on the ground. Downhill skiing, sledding, ice skating and snow shoeing are all great ways to stay active in the snowy winter.
One Plate. This eating rule has been helpful for many of my clients over the years who have a self-control issue and tend to overeat. It is easy to fill up your plate more than once when you are eating with friends, potlucks, or family dinners. Overeating can lead to an overconsumption of calories. Filling your plate up just once can save you from those extra calories and in time can help slow weight gain as well. The one plate rule is good advice all year round, by the way.
Eat Whole Foods. Whole foods is a generic term for eating foods that are minimally processed. Filling your plate with fruits, vegetables, lean proteins and whole grains helps your body get the variety of nutrients it needs to maintain your health.
Maintain Healthy Eating Habits. Maybe this rule is just for me, but in the winter I spend more time indoors and closer to my kitchen. That along with the cold outdoor temperatures make snacking and high calorie foods all the more tempting. For many people, snacking is a way to ensure proper nutrition is consumed daily. For me, snacking is often just for pleasure and comfort. It can be against our health goal to continually snack and over consume foods. Maintaining your healthy eating habits from the rest of the year into the winter can be tough but possible.
All I am trying to say is the winter season is no reason to reduce your need to eat and live a healthy lifestyle. Keep your health a priority no matter what weather or situation is occurring. Remember, your body is a gift God gave you. Let’s all do our best to take care of it. Have a great winter and a fantastic 2023!