May 30, 2024


Health know-how

Building healthy habits during the holidays

There are some simple things you can do to help you stay a little healthier during the holiday season.

OREGON CITY, Ore. — The holiday season is here and that means a lot of good food and tempting treats, which make it tough for people to stay healthy during the holidays.

But there are some simple things you can do to help you stay a little healthier.

A post on my Instagram account about working out and eating healthy until Christmas got a number of responses from people who said they’re trying to do the same. One of the people who reached out, was Cydne Vaughn.

“I had three pieces of pie. So, I was not skimping on anything,” said Vaughn.

She, like so many of us, went ham over the Thanksgiving holiday weekend.

“We had turkey and mashed potatoes, and gravy, and rolls,” Vaughn said.

It’s tough staying healthy and on track with Halloween, then Thanksgiving, and now Christmas and the New Year. But Vaughn knows she can do it. About a year and a half ago, the mom of three started her fitness journey.

“I was feeling real ‘blah’ and kind of depressed,” she said. “I didn’t have motivation or energy I wanted to be able to keep up with three kids, and I was just over 30 and wanted to feel good.”

Fast forward to today and Vaughn has lost 65 pounds so far. 

Her goal is to keep it up. She’s getting some help from personal trainer, nutritionist, and life coach, Amy Light Ramage.

“I’m owner of Fit for Excellence which is a small boutique studio in Oregon City,” said Ramage.

She said before the pandemic, 75-80 people would come to her gym daily. Now, like other businesses, she’s had to adapt.

“Since we’re back at home now, I go online and do a live daily workout every day live five days a week and we have cardio on the weekend and a yoga expert on the weekend also,” Ramage said.

She’s got some easy tips that’ll help you stay a little healthier this holiday season. Ramage said the time period between now and Christmas is the perfect time to start building healthier habits.

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“I love easy tips ‘cause they’re doable and you just have to start with one,” Ramage said.

“I always first talk about hydration: Instead of feeling bad about enjoying all your food, I want you to hydrate up.”

The CDC says drinking water can help with managing body weight as well as dehydration, which can have an effect on mood and your ability to think.

“Another quick tip is looking at your sleep,” said Ramage.  

“If I’m exhausted, the first thing I’m doing is grabbing chips and Reese’s peanut butter cups,” she said.

Getting adequate sleep and water are two simple ways to start being healthier and, of course, Ramage said it’s also important to get in whatever activity you can, even if it’s getting out for a walk.

“The hardest part is just getting started. You have to make the decision one day: I’m just gonna do it,” said Vaughn.

She said since starting her fitness journey, she’s had to change her mindset about food as well. There were plenty of times when Vaughn said she would beat herself up over having a treat or two. But now, she’s realized it’s all about balance.

“Take care of yourself the best you can and allow yourself to indulge and don’t feel guilty about it, because you work hard to make sure that you are healthy,” Vaughn said.

“There are plenty of times where my kids are eating Oreos and I’m like I am gonna be really grumpy if I don’t eat an Oreo too.”

Changing mindsets is one of the main things Ramage said she helps people deal with. She said it’s OK to indulge over the holidays, but be mindful of it, then get right back on the horse the next day.

“If it’s Thanksgiving, you eat that pie, you love it, but learn to love it on purpose,” she said.

“When I was eating my pumpkin pie, I was loving it. I don’t have food guilt. I do it on purpose then I wake up the next day, I work out, I drink my water, and then I feel good,” said Ramage.

She said another thing that could help is to not keep unhealthy food in the house at all. That way, the temptation is gone.

Ramage also said it’s helpful to start keeping tabs on what eat. You can use one of the many apps that are available.

Finally, Ramage said getting a support system is crucial and can help keep you accountable and motivated.

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