Surviving the Holidays: Training

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Surviving the Holidays: Training

There’s no denying that, done right, you could sail through Christmas seeing the same great results from your diet and training routine that you do the rest of the year. The only problem is that doing it “right” may well mean a few compromises that rob you of the delights you’ve been anticipating this holiday season. Not only could this potentially make you a miserable human being while everyone around you is being jolly, merry, or whatever other wishy-washy adjectives seem to fly around at this time of year, it could also affect relations with your nearest and dearest. No-one wants that.

So, along with our survival guide for food and alcohol this Christmas, here are a few tips on keeping your training routine going.

  • Keep An Accurate Record Of Your Workouts – If you have a record of when you hit the gym, what you did, and how long you did it for to refer to, you can easily and efficiently avoid falling into the trap of saying, “Oh, you’re going out for drinks? I was going to the gym. Well, I went Tuesday, it’s Friday now, I could go tomorrow. Hang on, maybe it was Monday…” A record is a constant reminder of not only when you were last there, it’s a diary of all your achievements as well as the areas you need to work on. At a time of year when life can easily become a bit of a blur, it will keep the one area that needs it the most in sharp focus.
  • Do What You Enjoy – I’m the first to shout that you need to be disciplined at the gym. Don’t just do what you love, hit all areas, particularly those lifts you dread because chances are they’re the ones that need the most work. This time of year, though, just through December, and if it’s going to get you there when otherwise you might go out on the piss, I’m going to advocate skipping leg day. Come January, you’ll have to get back into it, but for now, if your favourite lifts are going to get you there, but legs are going to lose to the local pub? Do whatever you have to do to pick the gym.
  • Find A Motivated Friend And Stick To Them Like Glue – You know that guy? The one that goes to the gym every lunchtime without fail? He’s not hard to spot, he’s the one that makes his suit look like it’s bursting at the seams every time he reaches for the kettle in the communal kitchen. Okay, he’s your best friend this December. Cosy up to him, tell him you want to hit the gym with him. Tell him you’ll spot him and pay for his protein shake afterwards if it’ll do the job. You want him keeping you accountable. You want his discipline. Your mate Trev isn’t going to cut it. Trev’s alright, but if he decides he’s going to skip it tonight you know you’ll end up down the pub with him. No, you need suit guy. If this level of stalking is a little too creepy for you then maybe just find someone amongst your personal friends who fits a similar profile.
  • Be Realistic – This might not be the month to be setting new PBs. It might not even be the month for new goals, but that doesn’t mean it’s not a month to train. Maintain your routine and, even if your behaviour isn’t exemplary in all other areas of your life, at least you can work to maintain the results you’ve spent so much of the rest of the year working towards.
  • A Crappy Workout’s Better Than No Workout – Discipline fell apart on you last night? Too much bad food? A couple too many drinks? Go to the gym anyway. This is the time you need it the most, and it might not be your best workout ever, but it sure beats sitting on the sofa, eating leftover takeaway from the fridge and watching “Santa Claus – The Movie.”

Have a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year guys!


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