Staying active over the Christmas break

 [1723] Shannan Ponton at home

While Christmas is undoubtedly a time of joy and family and togetherness, it can also be a time of forgotten health and exercise goals.
Celebrity trainer Shannan Ponton is here to help, with his tips on how to stay fit, healthy and active over the holiday season.

As a fitness professional, I must say, you’ve got to love Christmas! It’s a match made in heaven and almost certainly guarantees a prosperous and rewarding New Year. But despite people’s best laid plans, Christmas cheer seems to spread over a month rather than a couple of days and that delicious, decadent, calorie laden food is irresistible when placed in front of you. Yep, one thing’s for sure, Christmas is great for business! 

For us trainers it’s time to step up and generate some speedy, noticeable results. For our clients and ‘Average Joe’s’, it’s time for you to honour your resolutions made at midnight after a few too many schooners or chardy’s. Make a few sacrifices and commit to achieving what it is you want!

Now I’m by no means a ‘body Nazi’ and pass no judgment on overweight or unhealthy people. I’m of the belief that it’s your life, your body. If you are genuinely happy within yourself, then more power to you. The thing I can’t ‘cop’, is people that are unhappy, uncomfortable or wanting change, and do nothing about it, other than start to roll their predetermined excuses: ‘I’m just lacking motivation’, ‘I’ve got a crook knee’, ‘I’m so stressed right now’... and so on. 

Don’t let the start be thing that stops you! You don’t have to rip in at a million miles per hour. Just start with something as simple as a walk. Then walk faster and further as you get fitter. Once fast walking becomes comfortable try a slow jog if you’re up for it. 

Of all the variables of fitness; speed, strength, agility, flexibility… consistency is the most important. So find something you can enjoy so you know you’ll keep it up until the motivation of seeing real results starts to kick in. 

Fitness and health is much more than worrying about appearances. You can help save someone you care about. If you do have someone in your life that needs to get moving, see if you can be the catalyst to get them started. Offer to walk with them; gently of course, you don’t want to scare them off! You could be responsible for turning their life around.

Here are five ways that help me stay fit, healthy and active over Christmas.

 [1723] Shannan Ponton at home
  1. Never go more than two consecutive days without training. Training habit is powerful and addictive but very easy to break.

  2. Don’t let Christmas day become Christmas week or even worse, Christmas month. I do have a heart, so go for it on Christmas Day, but then get back to eating clean and training on Boxing Day before too much damage is done.

  3. Eat before you go out. Eat a healthy low calorie meal before you head out. You’ll be less inclined
    to fill up on sugary, fatty, calorie laden snacks.

  4. Drink smart. Choose lower calorie and lower sugar drinks. Vodka and soda, spirits and diet soft drinks, and low carb beer will lessen the blow to your waist and butt!
    Remember to throw a couple of waters down too.

  5. Eat Clean. It’s Christmas, not a ten year old’s birthday party. Select beautiful fresh seafood, fresh ham, turkey and chicken, accompanied with plenty of seasonal veggies
    for Christmas lunch. Fresh fruit with low cal jelly or ice cream is a great healthy option for dessert.

Shannan Ponton
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Shannan does Personal Training sessions at Dee Why Fitness First