Friday, December 3, 2010

Winter Waistband

Personal health is a big issue for me, so I try to eat well and get in a few hours at the Rec Center every week. This time of year, though, it's harder than ever. Winter is my least favorite season. Cold weather is not my thing. I keep it rather warm in my apartment, and the library manages to stay pretty comfortable, too. (Luckily, Rec Sports at Tarleton has climate controlled facilities so the bitterly unpredictable Texas winter won't cramp my workout, either.) It doesn't help that this time of year an extra slice of pie tends to work its way into every important family event.

The good news is that there's still plenty of ways to stay healthy during the holidays. Here's a few of my favorites:

  • Take the stairs: Believe it or not, just replacing that elevator ride with taking the stairs can really go a long way. This isn't always practical (bad knees and two-ton book carts come to mind) but I find that, especially in the library, taking the stairs is often faster.
  • Snack on the vegetable platter: At just about every holiday party I go to, there's this nearly untouched pre-packaged plate of celery, broccoli, and baby carrots on the table next to the chips. I know the bean dip and Frito Scoops are tempting, but you can cut out a LOT of calories this way. Don't cheat by drowning your sorrows with ranch dressing either. A tiny slathering will give you all the flavor with a fraction of the bad stuff.
  • Get a "bad" parking spot: Crazy, right? We're all peeved when we can't find something close to the entrance. Look on the bright side, though: you CAN make it to the door, and back, without dying, and it doesn't have to kill your mood. Think of it as the universe's way of helping you stay active!
  • Pack a nosh: Take five minutes (or less) before class or work and slip an apple or granola bar in your bag. When you start getting the 10 AM grumblies, chomp down. As much as we all love scones and muffins, couldn't we all save the money and time it takes to go buy one?
  • DANCE! This is my ABSOLUTE favorite. If there's music at whatever holiday party you're going to, why not bust a move? It's going to get those endorphins pumping, burn calories, and up your popularity (...okay, maybe not). Basically, no downside!
Tiny steps can take you anywhere, and shedding that extra helping of fruit cake doesn't have to be hard. To help inspire you, I've even linked a fun dance video I saw on YouTube last week here.


Amanda (the librarian) said...

Great ideas, Thomas - especially the dancing!

Janie said...

AHA! So THIS is where my Y trainers got trained: Dancin' Kim! Thanks!