Holiday weekends can provide an opportunity to disconnect from work and reconnect with family and friends. While it's important to make the most of this time, it can be easy to overindulge in food and beverages and negatively impact your training.
Here are some simple tips for enjoying a healthy holiday weekend:
Start the day right: Set the tone with a nutritious breakfast and exercise. Stay on top of your hydration and drink half of your body weight in ounces of water throughout the day to establish a healthy hydration baseline. Take the edge off your hunger. Before your family dinner, drink a nutrient-packed smoothie (Tom Brady's favorite) or eat a handful of healthy nuts. You won’t always find nutrient-dense, healthy options at parties, so fighting ravenous hunger usually spells trouble.
Moderate and hydrate: Make your first drink a glass of water, and alternate water with any alcoholic beverages to help moderate your consumption. Avoid eating and drinking too much. Research shows that looking at each bite of food can decrease how much you eat. "Attentive eating" is a scientifically-based strategy based on the concept that we "eat with our eyes" as well as our mouths.
Take Time to Relax: Use the extra time off to manage your stress – try meditation, journaling, or directly carving out time for yourself. Stress releases cortisol, a hormone that triggers your appetite— whether you're hungry or not. Take a step back from the pressures of the season, breathe deeply, and reflect on the meaning you'd like the holidays to have.
Lean In & Have Fun: And remember, a night or two of celebration won’t ruin a whole year of hard work (and can be a great reward for your constant dedication to your health and wellness).