SCHOOL HOLIDAYS ARE HERE AGAIN! THEY COME UP FAST, BUT AS THEY MAKE UP AROUND 12 WEEKS OUT OF 52, IT’S A SIGNIFICANT PORTION OF OUR YEAR. WHILE WE ALL LOVE A BREAK FROM OUR USUAL ROUTINES (NO SCHOOL LUNCH BOXES WHOOP WHOOP), SCHOOL HOLIDAYS CAN THROW A BUNCH OF CHALLENGES AT OUR HEALTH AND FITNESS GOALS. BODIES BY RYAN HEAD HONCHO RYAN DEVEREUX HAS COME UP WITH HIS TOP SEVEN TIPS TO STAY ON TOP OF YOUR HEALTH AND FITNESS OVER THE NEXT TWO WEEKS SO YOU HIT TERM FOUR ON THE FRONT FOOT.
1. Schedule – PLAN! PLAN! PLAN! There’s simply no substitute for being organised, and having a weekly and daily planner. So hopefully you’ve already got everything planned and locked into your diary or google calendar for the next fortnight. It’s my challenge to you to stick to your schedule like a well-oiled machine during these school holidays to make sure you look after yourself both physically and mentally.
2. Food Prep – Make sure you have healthy lunches made for the kids and YOU! The feedback I receive from our members is that the wheels fall off when there’s no food prepped for the week, especially during the daytime meals. Now, this doesn’t mean you have to weigh your food and be in full challenge mode but I would highly recommend cooking some healthy protein and carbs to have with you each day. By adding some fresh salad or vegetables each day, this will save you loads of money and time walking around Claremont Quarter trying to get cash out for the sushi bar (although if you’re caught out, I highly recommend sushi as a healthy option). And if you have hangry kids trailing behind you, you’ll thank me even more for having food prep readily available!
3. Healthy alternatives/ off plan meals Leading on from tip two, I would imagine over the holidays there will be times you have to search for some healthy options on the run. As I mentioned, sushi is a no-brainer with healthy protein and carbs. Even though white rice gets a bad rap at times we still need CARBS! Another great fallback is heading somewhere for an all-day breakfast and hitting a standard eggs on toast (two slices of bread will also not hurt your physique over the course of the day, especially try and order spelt or gluten-free if available). Add a few healthy sides ( greens, tomatoes, mushrooms,) and fill up on the good stuff. That way if you do like to track your food/calories over the day it’s easy to add those foods into My Fitness Pal. Side note – tracking your food/calories does not mean you have a food obsession/addiction/issue.
If you’re in the supermarket and stuck for time I would suggest some of the following; high-quality beef jerky, protein bar, pre-cut vegetable sticks, fruit, rice cakes and almonds/brazil nuts (just watch the quantities as they are full of energy/calories).
4. Water/Hydration – I had to add this one in even though it seems like common sense. Wherever you go, make sure you have a drink bottle filled with some high quality H20. This will also ensure you’re not buying bottles of water on the run and hurting the environment. Surly in 2020 we’re not still buying single-use plastic? Try to aim for 2-3 litres of water a day and have minimal drinks that will make you dehydrated like coffee and soda or diet soda. I know some people look for the mid-afternoon sugar hit – don’t do it!
5. Training – Don’t put yourself last these school holidays, book your classes in and commit! If your schedule is too hard with the kids at home I would suggest either setting the alarm earlier and getting some exercise done before anyone else is awake. 5am is one of the best times to train in my opinion. There’s no feeling like leaving the gym after you’ve smashed a workout while most of the population are still deep in a dream hiding under the covers. Get up and get it done! If all else fails, grab the kids and head for a walk in the park. Remember, any movement is better than no movement.
6. Meditation (anti-stress) – No one benefits when you’re stressed out! I don’t, your kids don’t and your partner definitely doesn’t. So, add some time into your schedule to meditate, take a short walk even if it’s 15 minutes it will help you reset and tackle the rest of your day. There are so many apps and YouTube clips now, there’s no excuse not to. Or, even make a short playlist of some songs you really like and bang some headphones in!
The bottom line is to schedule it in and make sure you are staying stress-free these holidays. If you’re ever feeling stressed or overwhelmed a simple technique to bring you back down is box breathing. Start with a 4 or 6-second inhale through the nose a 4 to 6-second hold, 4 to 6-second exhale followed by a 4 to 6-second hold. Don’t force the holds if it’s uncomfortable, but try for at least a minimum of 3 seconds for the box breathing. All breathing is through the nose.
The last anti-stress technique we can add-in includes your partner (wink emoji) I know the schedules might be tight with the kids around a lot but don’t forget to connect and spend some intimate time with your partner.
7. Alcohol consumption. – We all know how s*** it feels to wake up with a hangover, even after a few drinks. So if you’ve committed to exercising early the next morning maybe order and Vodka, lime and soda hold the vodka. I’ve used this technique hundreds of times before. Not many wait staff find it as humorous as I do.
I have to follow up all my tips with a disclaimer that I don’t know what it feels like to juggle multiple kids for two weeks and I take my hats off to the mums and dads juggling all the usual things, plus little ones at home! Do your best over this time bearing in mind the above tips and don’t beat yourself up if you have a slip up or two. I asked our superstar member and blog writer Lisa O’Neill to share three bonus tips that keeps her sane and chasing her big goals while chasing after her two mini mes.
8. Stick up for your choices – It’s more common for my friends to be supportive of my healthy choices (mainly because they are healthy too) so it’s rare for me to be pressured into a drink or food I’m not interested in. However, on school holidays you’re often out for lunch or afternoon drinks at the park. Firstly, if you want a sunset glass of bubbles at the park with your mum friends or something delicious as a treat while you’re on holidays and not in challenge mode – have it and enjoy it! You’ve worked hard and the odd celebratory treat should be enjoyed. However, if you’re happy with your thermos of hot tea or your prepped veggie sticks, stick to your choices. If you feel pressured to drink or eat unhealthily, explain to your friends you’re goal chasin’ and sticking to your own drink/food and they’ll either be impressed and maybe even inspired or… their opinion doesn’t really matter. If they’re offended by your choice, it says more about them, don’t you think?
9. Make fitness a part of your kids’ day – Look, I’m aware I’m probably preaching to the converted here with fit fams aplenty at BBR, but in case getting to the gym is impossible in holidays, I want to expand upon Rhino’s point above. There’s always a way to get your kids involved in your fitness goals – whether it’s taking the soccer ball or footy to the park and having a kick, going for a bike ride to a fun destination (anywhere with coffee is fun for me), popping really little ones in the pram with snacks and power walking or jogging a few laps of the park before playground time, or even a home workout with kids playing around (or on) you. Making fitness fun in front of your kids will set them up for incorporating it into their own lives. Monkey see, monkey do – right?!
10. Try something new – We’re all a little addicted to the BBR endorphin rush, no?! However, on holidays many of us are in different locations and unable to get our hit of ass bike or sissy squats. It’s the perfect opportunity to either rest your body with something slower like yoga or some epic hikes (I just walked the Cape to Cape trail between Smith’s Beach and Canal Rocks down south and holy mother nature, it was good! Like, pod of leaping dolphins, heaven on earth good). Alternatively, hit up a local gym, go for a run with your partner or swim in the ocean and test your body in a new way. You’ll return to the gym with renewed enthusiasm, so don’t stress about your hard work being undone while you can’t get there – Rhino, Geno and Justine will make sure you’re whipped back into shape before your kids start complaining about the return of homework.
Happy school holidays, BBR fam! Soak up the fun times and breathe through the challenging times, we’ll see you in the gym.