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How to have a guilt-free Christmas

The festive season is here and for many of us that can mean busy social calendars, bottomless bubbles, decadent desserts and plenty of delicious food. The step away from routine and the increased intake of festive foods can be daunting for many and food guilt can result in feelings of stress and anxiety.

So I wanted to take a moment to remind you that it is important to acknowledge that the holiday season is a time to enjoy with your friends & family, so if you overindulge in chocolate or don’t have the time or energy to exercise, that is more than ok. That is just life. Good health comes from consistency and what you do MOST of the time - not all of the time, so an extra serving of dessert on Christmas day or a few drinks on New Years Eve, should be enjoyed for what they are, without feelings of regret.

My goal at Isle of wight Pilates is to always encourage balance, and this time of year is absolutely no exception.

If you struggle with navigating your way through the festive season, I have shared a few strategies that I hope can provide you with some guidance.

Practise Mindful Eating Tune in to your body & hunger cues and ask yourself how hungry you are and how much you would like to eat. By practising mindfulness prior to eating, it helps us make decisions around food based on how we actually feel, which in the end can result in us feeling more content and satisfied with our food choices. This strategy will also make us less likely to overeat and overall the dining experience will be more enjoyable.

Don’t Label Foods Good or Bad By categorising foods negatively or associating foods specifically to the festive season, it creates an idea that certain food groups are “off limits” and therefore a sense of urgency can cause many of us to over indulge, when we do allow ourselves to have them. To change this mindset, it is important to allow all foods to exist in your everyday diet, simply find the right balance and practice moderation with treats.

Avoid the All or Nothing Mindset Just because it is the holiday season it does not mean you have to completely forget all of the healthy habits you practise on a day to day basis. To feel your best: stay hydrated with plenty of water between alcoholic drinks, add fruit & vegetables to your meals when you can, avoid skipping meals and eat regular snacks, and if you feel up to it, incorporate some light movement such as a walk outside in nature, a slow & steady stretch or a quick 10 minute blaster to bump up those endorphins.

Remember you'r not on your own, if you would like a quick 10 minute stretch, a pilates class online or in person we have lots of options this Christmas. You can join me for the following

- Instagram live 30 minutes, Tuesday 27th at 11am

- Pilates on Zoom 1 hour, Thursday 29th at 10am

- 1-2-1 Reformer Pilates Wednesday 28th & Friday 30th

Or if you would like a recorded session please reach out and I will send one to your inbox.

I wish you all the most wonderful Christmas and new year,

Much love and well wishes,

Emma xxx

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