We're halfway through the most depressing month of the year, but don't let that hamper your spirits in making this the most active and healthy month yet. Last week we told you how to sustain your fitness goals and aspirations through some motivational talk, but this week, it's all about what to feed your body in order to balance out that exercise-diet ratio.
Starting with a little industry secret - sure, the holiday season is all about celebration and glee, but don't treat your body like a dustbin. Don't feed it food that you know it cannot handle, especially after the indulgence during Christmas and New Years.
Going on a post-holiday detox is almost a prerequisite at this stage, and we are here to help you survive it, in the best of our abilities.
- Limit your calorie intake: Did you know: an average Christmas lunch meals can tally up to 3500-4000 calories. And that's just the food. Woah, indeed! Now that Santa has gone back to North Pole, cut back on your calorie intake; if you're a woman, eat up to an average of 1200-1500 calories per day. Eliminate high G.I. food like pasta, bread and rice from your diet, also cut back on red meat and saturated fats to see results faster. Increase your intake of fresh foods, vegetables and lean protein like chicken, legumes and fish.
- Give sober January a go: Yes, the champagne bottle is sitting pretty in the liquor cabinet, but your body has had enough over all of December. Alcohol gives you a lot of empty calories that can be deceiving, especially if you're watching your calorie intake for the next month. Cut back on alcohol, even if you decide to not stop completely.
- Have one treat day per week: It's not all about limiting yourself and 'dieting'; enjoy all the hard work you're putting in the gym with a foodie treat day. Don't go completely wild here, however, but do allow yourself to eat your favourite food and perhaps a cheeky drink. Life is short, after all.
- Do a juice cleanse: If you're really serious about this post-holiday weight loss, then go on a juice cleanse for one-to-three days. While this is considered a fad, it can be incredibly detoxing for the body after weeks of overeating. Your body is at the stage where it needs all the fresh vegetables and fruits it can take in order to alkalise it. So if you don't have the patience or time to cook them, juice them instead and carry them on the go!