Work Christmas parties can be a time of much over-indulgence. You’ve been training hard, watching what you eat, and seeing results. You’re loving your new body and your new lifestyle. You don’t want to undo all of your hard work, but you also want to enjoy yourself with your mates. What do you do?
We celebrated our local fitness community Christmas party on Saturday night. And let me tell you, most of us, not all of us, but most of us over-indulged. We had dinner at Little Miss Korea and then went to Stone House for some wine. It was a great night.
"Plan ahead and give yourself permission."
Christmas parties are fun. And you should celebrate them. It’s important to enjoy yourself on occasions, and if you can’t enjoy yourself and over-indulge a little at a Christmas party, when can you?!
Do not be hard on yourself and not allow yourself to enjoy some good food and drinks if it’s what you would like. Discipline is like a muscle and you can fatigue it, even over time. If some Creme Brulee and a glass of Tolpuddle Pinot Noir is what you want, now is the time to enjoy it. Celebrate your successes, have fun, strengthen relationships and make memories.
The people who are successful at staying on track with their health and fitness goals are the ones who plan ahead. They do something to get on track with their goals ahead of times like these, not after a big night because they feel guilty for it. Then, when these occasions arise, they take a break, celebrate a little, and then get back on track. They integrate these occasions into their life ahead of time.
When occasions such as Christmas parties arise, which have the potential to disrupt and throw you off track, take steps to ensure minimal disruption to your life and your routines. Here’s how you can plan ahead for your work Christmas party, to minimise disruption to your routines and help keep you on track with your health and fitness goals.
Drink water throughout the day. You should be doing this everyday anyway, but you want to go out well-hydrated. It means you’re starting the night in a good place and not behind the 8-ball before you even begin.
Eat a small meal before you go out. This will help you eat less at dinner and save money. But it will also ensure you get some healthy nutrition into your body before you go out just in case you choose a less-than-healthy dish at some point in the night.
Only take a certain amount of money. Do whatever you have to do to ensure you only have access to a certain amount of money. You don’t want to get to 11pm and, feeling a little merry, start robbing from the children’s college fund to get another bottle of Tolpuddle (can you sense my affection for this drink? It’s delicious, but very expensive).
Organise a lift (in and home) ahead of time. Don’t risk it. Just. Don’t. Do. It. Driving in yourself can help ensure you don’t drink too much so you can still drive home. But seriously, just treat yourself for one night, even if you don’t drink. Organise a lift.
Give yourself permission. If you’ve done the work and are on track with your health and fitness goals, give yourself permission to indulge. Of course, if you really don’t want to, don’t do it. But if you think it might be nice to indulge in 6 courses, a sweet dessert and a bottle of Tolpuddle, go for it.
Make a plan for the next day. Plan a workout for the next day. But, if you are tired and simply don’t want to do it, give yourself permission to skip it and just sleep (or rest). But planning to do something, especially if it’s with somebody, will give you some accountability during the night to wake up the next morning in a functional state.
These “obstacles”, if you want to call them that; I don’t, I call them a normal and fun part of life, are going to arise. Don’t do nothing about your health and fitness and then punish yourself on the night by not enjoying yourself. Get on track with your health and fitness ahead of time and then give yourself permission to enjoy the function when the time comes.
What strategies do you use to stay on track with your health and fitness goals at functions like work Christmas parties?
Leave your answer to that question in the comments section below.
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