Hi guys,  Kris from Custom Fitness here, your personal trainer in Amarillo. Today I’m going to be talking about the Christmas hustle. If you have any questions about today’s blog, please give us a call at (806) 322-3188

I wanted to know if you’ve noticed that with the Christmas hustle that taking time out for you is getting less and less easy? Do you feel like by the end of Christmas you need the week off just to recover? Are you taking on every task that is being thrown your way this holiday season?

It seems that once you have that “okay” to take time off, you start to fill that time with every possible task that you can think of. The same thing happens in retirement once a person has all of this free time on their hands. I have yet to meet a retired person that doesn’t work harder voluntarily being retired than what they were when they we’re working at a typical job.

If you constantly try to fill the free time that you have, you really overuse your sympathetic nervous system which is essentially your fight or flight response. The body is always pumping out those hormones saying “You have to do things! You have to keep moving!” and your stress levels rise. It almost feels like if you take a minute to sit down that you’re going to miss out on something.

Have you ever had this experience? It’s like when you set your phone away from you further than your arm’s reach and you start to feel a sense of anxiety from not being able to check what’s on your phone. The same thing happens when you sit by yourself in a room. There was a study done last year that took a group of college students and split them into two groups. With one group they promoted different ways to relax. The other group was given two choices: sit in a quiet, dark room by themselves for fifteen minutes, or they could go into another room and wear a shock collar for fifteen seconds. It astounded me that about 87% of the people chose to be shocked by the collar rather than sitting in a quiet room. My first guess was that those 87% weren’t moms. If you gave me the chance to take fifteen minutes by myself, you’d come back in and find me contently asleep. But the point being that people cannot handle the idea of sitting still, and that happens a lot during Christmas. At Christmas you constantly fill the void by helping out everybody without ever taking the time to stop for yourself.

So, what do you do to work on taking time for yourself? First step is to recognize what’s happening. You have to admit that you aren’t taking the time that you need for yourself. You also have to be willing to take charge and change a few things. Realizing that the word “No” is an okay thing to say, and that you don’t always have to be the person to say “Yes” to every task that is thrown at you, is a hard step to take but an essential one. If you don’t allow yourself to take on too much, what that’s going to do is actually help your health rather than hurt it.

As you move towards taking that time for yourself, let’s take on the next part of the holiday season. The other thing that you might have noticed is that a lot of people are sick. You just push yourself to the limit too often, you fill your life with so many things, and you don’t take time to recover from the stress that you put on your life already. So you need to look at the top three as: exercise, nutrition, and rest. If you don’t have those three things in there, you aren’t going to be able to function to your best ability.

So your exercise right now, (and you’re going to love this) may need to be less than it usually is. You might be very stressed out right now, and if that’s how you’re feeling, then maybe you need to lighten your workout. Maybe you need to aim for a fifteen to twenty minute workout. Maybe doing something like yoga or pilates might be a better fit for you right now instead of high interval training that you’ve been doing. If you push too hard during stressful times, you may end up working backwards and gaining fat instead of burning it. Now you end up working against yourself and that just causes more stress. So exercising at a lower intensity sometimes can help to reduce that stress level and help the body to be able to recover.

Now with nutrition, you need to make sure that you’re getting all that you need. As you get busy in the Christmas season you tend to not eat well, not hydrate well, or start skipping meals because you can’t slow down to sit and eat. What you want to be doing is making sure that your nutrition is supporting everything that you need. So you have to make sure that you have enough water, have enough protein, have enough vegetables, and have enough fats. And if you have those things and you’re eating correctly most of the time, then those extra Christmas goodies aren’t going to do that much damage to you. Now if you’re eating them every day, or you’re baking and keep taste testing everything, that might do some harm. But if it’s just every now and then, it’s not a big deal. Enjoy life and live outside of the bubble, but make sure that the rest of your meals are supporting your nutrition and your health the way that you need them to.

So the last part is resting. You have to take time to rest. I know it’s hard, but you have to sleep and you need downtime during the day. So again i’m going to pull out the mom examples. I hear often that, “I get my ‘me’ time after the kids go to sleep, so that’s why i stay up until two in the morning. Then I get up at six in the morning to get everyone ready for the day.” That’s a problem. I know that, that might be the only time you have for you, but you need to find a way to balance that. You still have to get sleep, but you also need that quiet time to rest as well. So find that quiet time in your day to try and achieve that balance so that you can take better care of yourself, stay well this season, and be able to help more people. Be sure to take care of yourself first so that you can be able to do the rest. It’s not selfish, it’s not a bad thing to do, you have to be able to keep yourself healthy.

So if you want more help with finding the balance, then we are the team for you. We have an entire team dedicated to this as professionals to help you. To get your consultation set up, give us a call at 806-322-3188 or email us at info@customfitness.biz At Custom Fitness, we are YOUR personal trainers in Amarillo, Texas. Have a great day.