If the holidays sometimes leave you feeling overwhelmed and out of control, you’re not alone! Here are some key things you can do to stay happy and healthy throughout the busy holiday season.
Send the Grinch packing!
He’s a mean one, all right. If the Grinch has stolen your holiday spirit and good intentions, try some of these tips to reclaim your ho-ho-ho.
Keep up healthy habits.
Make a pact with yourself during the holidays. For example: “For the next three weeks I will move more and do something active every day, have a healthy breakfast and limit the sweets, and get at least seven hours of sleep each night.” If you don’t completely give up your healthy habits, you won’t feel like you have to start over once the holidays are in the rear-view.
Beware of party perils.
Special holiday events often serve up extra helpings of less-than-healthy foods. If you’re a guest, eat a healthy snack before you go to avoid overdoing it at the event. If you’re the host, challenge yourself to offer some delicious and healthier options using our recipes and cooking tips. Your guests will thank you.
Stay active — even in the hustle and bustle of the season.
A full holiday social calendar might lead to some missed workouts. Instead of beating yourself up about it, sprinkle some healthy activities into your daily routine. For example, if the weather isn’t too frightful, ride your bike to work or school. If dinner is going to be a feast, opt for a light lunch, then take a vigorous walk. And keep the family moving. When the kids are home from school, squeeze in some active chores and trips to the park.
But not too active.
Give yourself the gift of peace. When the invitations pile up, don’t be afraid to say no to some of them. If you need some down time to recharge for the next big party, declare a me-treat and do something that relaxes you. Try yoga, meditation or spending time in nature.
Make a plan for the new year.
Your poinsettia’s pooped and the gifts are all gone. Now what? It’s a great time to reset for the new year — but don’t go dashing through your to-do list too fast or you might not stick to your plan. Lay out realistic, sustainable steps for the months ahead. For example, start a daily walking routine and sign up for your local Heart Walk before you set your sights on that marathon!
About the American Heart Association
The American Heart Association is devoted to saving people from heart disease and stroke – the two leading causes of death in the world. We team with millions of volunteers to fund innovative research, fight for stronger public health policies and provide lifesaving tools and information to prevent and treat these diseases. The Dallas-based association is the nation’s oldest and largest voluntary organization dedicated to fighting heart disease and stroke. To learn more or to get involved, call 1-800-AHA-USA1, visit heart.org or call any of our offices around the country.
About the American Stroke Association
The American Stroke Association is devoted to saving people from stroke — the No. 2 cause of death in the world and a leading cause of serious disability. We team with millions of volunteers to fund innovative research, fight for stronger public health policies and provide lifesaving tools and information to prevent and treat stroke. The Dallas-based association officially launched in 1998 as a division of the American Heart Association. To learn more or to get involved, call 1-888-4STROKE or visit StrokeAssociation.org.