How to Get Back in Shape After the Holidays

Are You Ready to Improve Your Fitness for the New Year?

You are not alone if you’re one of the many people shocked by the number on the scale after weeks of seemingly harmless holiday indulgences. Holiday weight gain is more common than not, with all the extra treats and leftovers lurking in break rooms and at home. It’s usually only after the Times Square ball drops that people realize they’ve dropped the proverbial ball on their fitness goals. The good news is, getting back into shape after New Year’s Day is very doable and doesn’t need to be overwhelming, time-consuming, or restrictive. Try our top 10 tips for improving your fitness for the new year, and you’ll be at your healthy and happy weight again in no time.

Key takeaways

  • Make a goal and stick to it. Write down your plan and keep your eye on the end result. You’re more apt to incorporate fitness into your new year if you focus on short-term goals.
  • Take the time and do the work to achieve actual weight loss – avoid health quick fixes and fad diets at all costs.
  • Be kind to yourself in the process. One of the critical components of improving your fitness for the new year starts with a positive, renewed mindset.
  • Find balance. It’s essential to implement a doable plan for overall health, nutrition, exercise, hydration, sleep hygiene, and mental focus as well.

Try Our Top 10 Tips for Ramping Up Your Fitness and Weight Loss Goals for the Coming Year.

  1. Define a health resolution to get back in shape after the holidays. This process will look different for everyone and doesn’t have to indicate a number on the scale. Your health goal may reflect how your clothes fit, how you feel physically (reducing indigestion, inflammation, A1C, and blood pressure), or something else entirely. No matter your health goal, it needs to be measurable, relative, and attainable for you – no one else! You may find that it helps to work toward your goal incrementally. Write down your objective and the steps you need to take charge of your fitness for the new year. Stick to your personal plan, and if you go off course, start again with the next meal.

  2. Start your return to good health slowly. Sometimes you have to go slow to go fast. Starting slow means you truly understand where you’re going. Break down everything you need to improve your fitness for the new year. Make smaller incremental adjustments that focus on the big picture in an effort not to get overwhelmed by a big overall health goal. This doesn’t mean you have to live in your gym. Just take your new exercise plan gently into the new year.

  3. Take care of your whole self for optimal health. When you’re getting back into shape after the holidays, it’s important to take care of your body, mind, and soul. Just like you follow an eating plan, meet a daily water goal, and complete your workouts – it’s important to take care of your mental health as well. Engage in activities that allow you to clear your mind, like reading, meditating, or taking a walk with a friend during the day. Each of these smaller improvements will help you achieve optimal health for the new year.

  4. Check your fuel. Most holiday weight gain comes from significant dietary changes (as opposed to inactivity). It’s important to get yourself back on track with a balanced meal plan. Everyone’s health and fitness resolution will differ, so the food on your plate will certainly differ as well. It’s important to check with your doctor and or a Registered Dietitian to help determine what meal plans will work best to help meet your needs. Across the board, most people find themselves healthier when they eliminate processed foods, increase vegetable consumption, limit red meat, increase lean protein consumption, reduce inflammatory foods, reduce sugar, and monitor portions.

  5. Track all your health goals. Tracking food consumption in an app or even recorded in a journal produces beneficial data to help you weigh your efforts against the number on the scale and make adjustments as needed. As you work on improving your fitness for the new year, make this accountability piece something to focus on daily for the best results. Equip yourself with information from trusted fitness professionals (trainers and nutritionists provide a wealth of free information online) as you make health and wellness a permanent part of your life. Show up for yourself each and every day by staying in tune with your goals.

  6. Sleep tight. Sleep is a huge factor in overall fitness. It’s important to go to bed at a time that allows you to get around 8 hours of sleep each night. If you have trouble falling asleep, consider putting some effort into your sleep hygiene to ensure you get adequate rest. This process may mean creating a peaceful sleep environment with just the right amount of light, using a white noise machine (or earplugs if you need total silence), investing in a weighted blanket, adjusting the climate control in your bedroom, drinking a hot tea before bed, or even taking a bath with soaking salts that encourage rest and relaxation. When you get good sleep, you will have more stamina to wake easily, get more done during the day, complete your workout, and you’ll be able to do all of this with an improved mood and daily outlook.

  7. Realistic exercise routine. Sure, it’s tempting to set your sights on a 26.2 miler sometime this year. However, if you’re not a runner (or new to running in general), start with more attainable goals. One of those may include running one mile, then a 5k, then a half marathon, and then the full marathon. However, don’t bite off more than you can chew right off the bat. Start low and slow if you’re wanting to up your weights. Start with a range of weights just slightly above what you normally would do and a few workouts a week. There’s no reason to over-exert yourself while also trying to get your diet, sleep, and mindset in check as well.

  8. Hydrate. Drinking the right amount of water for your body will support your objective of achieving optimal fitness for the new year. The amount of water you need is much more than you expect. Experts recommend dividing your body weight in half and drinking that much water (in ounces). For example, if you weigh 200 lbs, you’d divide that number in half. One hundred ounces of water would be your daily objective. If you’re spending time in the heat, breastfeeding, or doing high-intensity workouts, you’ll need to adjust your daily intake to stay properly hydrated.

  9. Switch up your fitness. Mix it up if you’ve been doing only cardio or strength training for a while now! It’s beneficial to all of your bodily systems to incorporate various forms of exercise into your daily routine. If you’ve been running on the treadmill for years now, try a hike outside instead! Absorbing the beauty of nature while challenging your body through varied terrain can really make a difference in your results and mindset. If you’ve been using machines at the gym, consider incorporating a dumbbell, remedy ball, or kettlebell workout at home. You may love it and decide working out at home is your key to consistency. Adding additional ways to elevate your physical fitness for the new year can be vital in achieving the best results.

  10. Don’t quit on your health. Getting back in shape and finding your way after the holidays may seem like a tedious process at first, but consistency and dedication will pay off. If you’re dedicated to a routine that works for you, you will achieve the results you’re looking to fulfill. It’s important to log your daily food and activity details and see how they correlate with your weight loss goals. If you aren’t making the progress you’re used to after the holidays, find a way to make minor adjustments to your routine until you see the results you’re searching for. Remember, the way to healthy, sustainable weight loss is approximately 2 lbs per week. Crash diets that promise a quick fix will not pave the way to long-term health. Support your goals properly from the get-go by implementing a realistic way to start an exercise routine and meal plan that works for you!

Keep Your Exercise Goals and Body Strong Through the New Year.

Once you put in the work to course-correct your holiday weight gain, don’t lose your momentum heading into summer or the next holiday season. Setting yourself up for success and monitoring your goals all year long is essential. The same rules from above apply. Just keep going. It’s important to monitor your diet, keep a schedule, exercise regularly, drink more water, get enough sleep, get out of your own way, keep track of your progress, and find your people (aka an accountability partner or two). Sometimes there’s a temptation to slack off or lose the accountability part when you are close to your goal; watch yourself closely and level set as needed.

Try Some New Home Gym Workouts. 

If you get into a rut during the coming year, check out Hampton Fitness’s social channels for something new. You can use our sample workouts at your home gym. We can help add variety to your routine by demonstrating fitness options you may not have thought of trying. Just remember, working out at home or the gym shouldn’t feel like a chore. Find exercises that you absolutely love, and then you’ll be more likely to stick with them. Your workouts have to make sense for your body and your life. If you don’t have time for the gym, working out at home is just as effective and often more fun and easier to stick to! Accessibility is an important part of setting goals that you can stick to. Make sure your routine is doable. And it’s never too late to try something new! 

Now You’re Ready to Ramp Up Your Fitness as You Find Your Way into the New Year!

The Hampton Fitness team wants to wish you a very happy new year and the best of luck with your 2023 fitness goals! We will help you as you get in shape after the holidays. Please get in touch with us with any questions about our products. Subscribe to our emails and follow us on social media for sample workouts that you can take with you through 2023.