With all the joy and happiness the holidays can bring, it is also a very stressful time. Reducing stress during the holidays can be challenging. There are so many additional things to do such as shopping, hosting parties, going to parties, etc. Just being thrown off your normal schedule can be overwhelming.

How to Reduce Stress During the Holidays:

1- Keep up your with regular exercise program. There is no better way to alleviate stress then with exercise. Even though you’re extra busy make sure you find the time to relax with a daily workout. If you are pressed for time just make the workout shorter. Even 10 minutes can go a long way to keep you feeling happy and refreshed.

2- Don’t drink too much alcohol. Having a few extra drinks during the holidays is fun but don’t get repeatedly drunk and wind up hung-over day after day. It’s hard enough getting everything done when you feel good; therefore, don’t put more pressure on your self by being hung-over.

3- Try not to gain weight. I have clients and friends who get stressed out worrying about all the weight they will gain over the holidays and how they are going to lose it. With all the parties and sweets around, you can offset the increase in calories by skipping breakfast or try intermittent fasting for a day or two. This will reduce your overall calorie consumption for the week. Why these two approaches work so well is you get to eat all the foods you like at parties while keeping your calories down by skipping meals.

4- Spend within your limits. We all stress out over money. Spending more money then you have will always get you in to trouble. It’s never how much you spend on a present that makes it special; it’s really the thought that counts. Holiday presents should only be for kids anyway. A little something for an adult like a bottle of wine or some dark chocolate is more than enough.

5- Take a twenty-minute nap. Getting enough sleep during December can be difficult with all the holiday parties and staying out late socializing with friends. You can’t feel relaxed if you are burning the candle at both ends. Take a quick 20-minute nap or just lie down and rest for 10 to 20 minutes in the afternoon. This can recharge your body and diminish the stress.

6- Have fun without putting too much pressure on yourself. It’s Ok if you don’t send out cards to everyone. Spend time with family and your closest friends and wish everyone else a happy New Year with a quick email or call when you have more time in January.

I hope these six tips help you. Let me know how you are avoiding holiday stress this year. If you are not, what is causing you to feel so overwhelmed?

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Best – Mike Cola

Fitness Contrarian – Fitness Blog

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My name is Mike Cola (yeah that is me in the pic @ 54 years old). I’ve been called a “Contrarian” since I believe that most mainstream fitness approaches are extremely inefficient.

I achieved the look in that photo just training 3 times per week. My specialty is helping people reach peak condition without having to hit the gym 6-7 times per week.

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