Can you be both festive and fit at the same time? Or does one exclude the other…?
When wanting to lose weight, some people feel like they have to forsake everything fun. They go to the gym after work and then straight home afterwards. They say no to social events, afraid of the temptations and the risk of eating too many cakes or drinking too much alcohol. In the quest to stay healthy and fit, they feel like these activities are better avoided
But is this healthy behaviour? Well, not necessarily! Obviously, your health depends on both a good diet and regular exercise – but your health also depends on mental and social wellbeing. A good balance between all the different factors is important... If you are not mentally happy, your body will be affected. And without a good social life, your mental health will suffer. If your body is not healthy, your mental health will be affected. It’s all connected.
But now back to our question: Can you be both festive and fit at the same time? Definitely, if you ask us!
Build a good base
If you eat a well-balanced diet and you exercise regularly, without a doubt you can ‘afford’ to party in the weekend. By eating healthily and getting some exercise, you build a good base. You will offer your body a lot of good nutrients, and you will get stronger and healthier. And this healthy base will not disappear just because you go to a party on Saturday! But make sure you don’t start a pattern of partying every day and skipping your healthy habits completely. One day won’t make or break a healthy lifestyle, but a week or a month will.
Exercise in the morning
If you know you are going to a big party in the afternoon or evening, it is a good idea to exercise in the morning. Scientists have found that people who exercise in the morning tend to eat better for the rest of the day, so this might prevent you from getting too reckless during the party later.
Another reason why exercising in the morning is a good idea is simply because then you get it done! You don’t risk getting distracted later in the day and ending up doing no exercise at all… Remember, the best exercise is the one that gets done.
You will already know the wisdom of drinking some water with your alcohol. Make it a habit to drink 1–2 glasses of water for each glass of wine. Use water to quench your thirst, and only drink a small amount of alcohol.
But did you know that it is also a good idea to make sure you drink enough water BEFORE the festivities? This will help you stay hydrated and can also reduce the amount of food you consume – because sometimes the brain confuses thirst with hunger, and you end up eating a lot when actually you were thirsty.
Moderation is key! If you want to taste everything at the party, make sure to eat sample sizes. A small serving size can often go a long way to satisfying your eye. And eat some hummus or nuts, because they will help you feel satiated but not stuffed.
Get up and get moving
When sitting for a long time, our body goes on ‘stand-by’ mode and our metabolism slows down. This affects our energy level and we feel tired. Get up and move around every once in a while… A good strategy is to stand up and walk around for 5 minutes every hour. And of course the dance floor is also a very good place to get moving!
The last but actually the most important tip when going to a party is: enjoy it! Have fun with your friends and family. Be present, indulge in great food, and have a good time
Did you know?
That one glass of red wine has approximately 130 calories? This would take 17 minutes of walking or 15 minutes of dancing to burn off (if you weigh 70 kg).
That the severity of hangovers is directly related to the amount of alcohol consumed? Drinking in moderation, or not at all, is the best way to prevent a hangover.
That sleep is important to your overall health? Make sure to get 6–8 hours of sleep each night, especially after staying up late to party.
That by avoiding food before you go to a party in order to save calories for later, most times you will end up eating way more in the evening than you saved in the morning? Eat a good solid breakfast before you leave home.