Happy Holidays to all the athletes from NWCF!

Yes, we consider you an athlete, whether you do or not, and now is the offseason holidays!

Did you reach ALL your fitness goals in 2017? If not, let us guide you towards your goals in 2018. So your most vital investment, YOU, doesn’t crash!


Does taking a break during the holidays make you feel like throwing in the towel? Don’t give up!  Check out some of our tips and tricks that will help you stay on track. We are committed to ensuring that “YOU” the most incredible part of our gym, do more than just get in shape: we want to educate, inspire, and bring “YOU” to new heights by engaging with us in our efforts to strengthen our healthy community. We are all in this together; coaches, members, friends, co-workers and associates!

Here are a few tips and tricks to help you manage the holiday parties and overindulging during this time of year.


1. Plan Ahead

If you know you have a dinner party or function where the urges to indulge in sweets or other delicious goodies will be high, be sure to make other meals during the day that are on point with your diet and consumption.  When it comes to battling hunger urges, lean towards a few healthy snack or food options during the day; like crunchy veggies, unsalted nuts or a protein shake.

With so many different healthy recipes available, there’s no reason you can’t find one that will make both your taste buds and diet plan happy! Search the Healthy Recipe Database to find delicious, usually protein-packed sweet and savory recipes that will fuel your muscles and feed your cravings.


2. Improvise Your Workouts

Do not use a busy schedule as an excuse to skip the gym. Instead, be creative.  If you can not fit in an hour-long class, attend open gym or do a workout at your house. Try some of these workouts you can do at home or while traveling.  I am big fan of using our open gym time or lunchtime schedule if you are in the area and can pop over for a quick workout at the gym.  Open gym can be just what “your body ordered.”  The coach on duty can help tailor a workout for how you are feeling, your time available and what you are looking to accomplish. We are here for you in any way we can in order to make sure you stay somewhat on track and don’t regress into oblivion. Even if you feel you have already, don’t worry about how far you feel you have slipped, we have a recipe for getting you back no matter what!

If you feel like you are not able to get in try some alternative ways to stay fit:  Skiing, skating, running a 5K, or playing games with your kids are all great ways to incorporate activity into the holiday schedule.  If you start having more fun with fitness this holiday season, staying active won’t feel so much like work!


3. Avoid Sitting for Long Periods of Time

Be aware if you are just sitting around at parties vs. standing.  Parties are opportunities be on your feet for a few hours, so move around and enjoy yourself.  Hopefully the DJ is on point so you can tear up the dance floor.  If you are home on days off, try to stay active and do some family chores. Turn up your favorite music and do something productive. If you don’t want to work, then think about doing a short circuit in your living room or play some games with the kids or your spouse. Just keep moving around and don’t get into long periods of sitting, laying around or watching endless Netflix shows. Encourage your whole family to get involved.


4. Use The Cold To Your Advantage

If you can muster up the courage, bundle up and step out in the cold burn up some calories! Your body will love getting warm in the cold air and you will feel refreshed!


5. Find New Ways to Manage Stress

One thing that is often overlooked is to learn how to better manage your stress levels. One of the easiest ways to lower heart rate and reduce stress is to focus on your breathing for five to ten minutes. Think about taking a deep 3-4 second inhalation and then a long sighing type of exhale that lasts up to twice as long, 6-8 seconds. When you exhale, try to let go of anything weighing heavily on your mind. Try to become that silent observer in the sky that doesn’t judge your thoughts and become at peace with acceptance for where you are in life.

Stress raises cortisol, affects your insulin, and makes fat burning a tough process. Stressing is only going to make your life that much harder.

Start slowing down, chewing your food, and enjoying the spirit of the jovial people around you. Also remember that you don’t have to accept every invite you get. Sometimes a jam-packed schedule is the source of all your holiday stress, so start practicing saying “no” when you feel overwhelmed. Those who care about you will understand you can’t do everything. More importantly, try to smile more and let go of negative thoughts!


6. Try Alternative Methods of Staying Fit

If you’ve got lots of friends and family in town for the holidays, don’t feel like you have to go it alone at the gym.  Invite a friend with you.  This is your chance to give the gift of fitness to your friends and family.

If the gym doesn’t quite fit into your schedule consider alternative methods of getting fitness into your routine.


7. Make a 2018 Plan and Set Goals Now

Most people set goals for the New Year, meaning they essentially write off December and let themselves slack until January first. Why wait until next year to start your health and fitness goals?  Write your goals down now, and get everything lined up and ready to go.

While you may have to modify your goals slightly due to the nature of the holiday season, have some markers in place that you can hit every day; like tracking your meals, eating under a certain number of calories, or doing a workout a certain number of times per week.

Doing this now will help keep you focused and forging ahead!

Finally, if you are going to set a New Year’s resolution, make sure you lay it out properly beforehand. Writing down and planning for your goals may make you more likely to achieve them, so that’s the first place to start.

In addition, between Christmas and New Year’s, clear your cupboards of last year’s junk to give yourself a fresh start. Rid yourself of all the bad foods that you’ve been keeping in the house so they aren’t there to tempt you.

Give yourself a new beginning. You don’t have to go 0-60; you can start slow. Taking small, manageable steps will eventually lead to your larger goal.

If you’re looking to spruce up your motivation, go out and get some new gym gear. A new outfit or t-shirt can help give you a fresh start and reignite your motivation for your goals.  After all, every ounce of extra motivation can be helpful at the start of a new year!

8. Family That Workouts Together are Happier and Healthier

This is a very family focused time of year.  WE can look to leverage that into some fun group fitness.  Family walks, hikes or runs are a great way to do something active as a family.  Coming to the gym as group is another way to increase the frequency of training.  This is a great time of year to get the family working out together in a family class or bringing the kids to a class. Check out our upcoming kids classes at Greenlake or email [email protected] if you’d like to learn more about the program!

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Part 2 of the “12 Days of Fitness” to follow!