The next couple of days are going to see many of us curled up by the Christmas tree surrounded by wrapping paper and enjoying the gluttonous glow of a much appreciated lunch, just the way it should be. To make sure you really get the most out of it however, we asked Pennyhill Park Hotel and Spa’s fitness guru, Chris Young to share his top tips to ensure the whole family feels fab over the festive period!
Start the day well
This might go against what many so-called experts say, but I recommend having a minimal number of carbs, ideally none, at breakfast. Scrambled eggs with tomato, or an omelette with lots of veggies is best because we have greater insulin sensitivity in the morning which means that carbs are more likely to be stored as fat when eaten at this time.
Take fun exercise, and encourage the family to join in too
I’m not asking that you become one of those nutters who jump into the freezing River Thames first thing on Christmas morning, far from it. Going for a morning (or evening) walk will get the juices flowing and set you up for the day. Maybe expand the walk to a game of football or flag rugby, just remember, even if you were the captain of the school team, don’t get too competitive! Alternatively, try playing some indoor games which are a bit more physical than merely watching the TV such as Nintendo Wii – playing head-to-head is always fun, and burns a few calories as well! Even old standbys such as Twister or charades will get the family moving!
Have your alcohol late in the day
There is actually a lot of goodness in your Christmas dinner, even if, like me, you can’t quite manage the sprouts, but the timing of your alcohol consumption could make an average day into a nutritional disaster. When you consume an alcoholic drink, the body prioritises dealing with the poisonous alcohol and not processing all those great calories you’re consuming along with it. The strategy I recommend for minimising the effect of alcohol is to wait until a couple of hours after your meal before you start drinking so that the body at least gets a chance at digesting everything it’s taking in.
Have a nap
If you have kids then you were probably up at 4am, so a nap in the afternoon might be just what you need to re-energise for that evening walk I mentioned!
This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.