Sarah’s 10 easy tips to stay healthy this Christmas

Fitting exercise into all the Christmas chaos you might have thought impossible – I know, because my class numbers have dwindled!

So, you decide that you’ll just watch what you eat and not exercising won’t be a problem. Hmmmm…

If this is you, then believe me you are not alone. So I’ve decided to put together 10 tips for surviving the festive season without doubling your weight, sinking into a slough of despond, succumbing to the lurgy or killing your Mother-in-law:

1. Start each day with a mug of warm water with half a lemon squeezed in it. The warm water will cleanse the liver, the lemon will help your immune system keep the colds away and reduce the acidity of the body after all the indulgence.

2. Don’t skip breakfast in order to eat more turkey and mince pies. Start the day with protein and veg – scrambled eggs with wilted spinach, Mushroom omelette, grilled tomatoes with feta cheese. If you eat a good protein based breakfast you won’t feel the need to gorge on the less healthy items later in the day.

3. Pick one small achievable goal every day – it might be to not drink any coffee, it may be to do 10 minutes of yoga, it might be to get past mid-day before you have an alcoholic drink. Whatever it is, stick to it!

4. If you can’t get to the gym or out for your normal run, do 15 minutes of stretching or yoga at home. (Try or None of us stretch enough through the year – perhaps this is the time to change a habit.

5. When it’s all going pear-shaped, stop. Feel the ground under your feet, close your eyes and breathe. Deep breaths, in through the nose, out through the mouth, inhaling all the way, exhaling as far as you can. Five calming breaths may be all it needs to stop the panic and start again.

6. Eat something green every day. It is really easy, over this period, to just eat the festive food. Things won’t go quite as wrong if you balance it by eating something green.

7. When you ‘accidentally’ buy two tins of Quality Street, why don’t you drop one off at the food bank or give it to a care home? That way you are helping someone less fortunate than yourself have a better Christmas and avoiding the extra calories that you really don’t need.

8. Swap out a bad snack for a good one every now and then. Instead of tucking into a sausage roll, have half an avocado with some homemade French dressing or simply just with sea salt and black pepper. Trade a mince pie for some apple and almonds. Your body will thank you for it!

9. Drink a glass of water for every alcoholic drink you have. Hydrating will flush toxins out of the system and reduce the hangover.

10. Try to avoid the Baileys and liqueurs. They have tons of sugar in them. Go instead for prosecco or G&T, or a spritzer.

Have a happy, healthy and relaxed Christmas and start the New Year one step ahead of yourself!!