Here we go again, another new year. Like many people you may have some resolutions. Here's an idea; don't get out of shape in the first place and there would be no need for a resolution. Resolutions are a way to make excuses not to get in shape and exercise long term.
If you are just starting out on the road to fitness, this is a perfect time to begin. The holidays are filled with temptations; hence all the candies and baked goodies around.
The game plan here is to focus on a goal, preferably a short-term goal. You must plan your time wisely. Even if you are short on time, find time to burn some calories. For example, if you only have 1/2 hour then run on the treadmill or ride the elliptical machine. Do something...like cardio.
If you are a regular exerciser you still must stay focused on a goal and plan your time and workouts accordingly. Just staying fit through the holidays would be a great goal in this case. You may consume a few more calories than normal during a 2-3 week period. My recommendation here would be to increase the cardio workouts either by adding one or add time to each workout you are doing.
This may also be a good time to start on a fat loss supplement. Do your homework on these products. Some make claims that aren't exactly true. The fat isn't just going to fall off overnight just because you are taking a pill. Again be careful here.
You want something that helps increase your metabolism so you burn more calories so you will burn more fat. There are also many products out there that work well. You have to find one you like and work best for you. I suggest trying some different ones to find the right one.
From time to time you may even want to switch brands just to give your body a change. Also ... heed the warning here and read the bottle and the precautions listed on the label.
Your nutrition is going to be the most important thing in this entire program to get and stay fit during the holidays. First of all you have to be realistic here. Most of us are going to consume more calories now than during other times of the year. You can even plan your cheat treats.
Just make sure you are doing the extra cardio to make up for those extra calories you take in. Your regular diet should be the same except for those extra treats. Especially keep your protein intake high, for this will help salvage muscle and you will be able to burn more calories.
I would recommend one gram of protein per pound of body weight per day. You would divide that number by five and this gives you the grams per meal.
Next I would lower your carbohydrate intake bit. This will help you burn off those extra calories by lowering total calories. Stay with the fibrous carbohydrates such as vegetables and leafy greens.
As far as fats go, I would make sure you get your good fats in. For example: olive oil, nuts, flaxseed oil, natural peanut butter etc.
Below is an example of a maintenance diet:
This is a good diet plan to follow through the next few weeks or even longer term. This is how you should eat most of the time. If you want that piece of Christmas pie or a few cookies for desert go ahead and have it. You have earned it. Just don't forget that little bit or extra exercise is necessary to balance things out.
Now it is time to plan the workouts. How are you going to fit everything into your schedule? You should exercise five times per week. Even if you have limited time do something. Whether you are on a split program or total body workouts I recommend weight training three out of the five days.
The two days devote to 1/2 hour to one hour of cardio, depending on how much you have been cheating on the diet.
Below is an example of a workout plan to get you through the next three weeks:
Try to perform weight training exercises every other day and do cardio and abdominal exercises on the remaining two days.
- Day 1: Weights and cardio
- Day 2: Cardio and abdominals
- Day 3: Weights and cardio
- Day 4: Cardio and abdominals
- Day 5: Weights and cardio
Remember staying fit through the holidays takes some discipline and focus. Pick your cheat treats wisely and don't go overboard. Keep exercising so you are burning the calories you are consuming. Most of all enjoy yourself. This is the time of year for friends and family and good cheer.
Follow this plan and you will see results whether you are just starting out or just staying fit.