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Monday, 29 July 2013

Healthy Living: Post-Holiday Pounds

Healthy Living: Post-Holiday Pounds

Today's post is from contributor - Natasha Gelder. ;Natasha is a full time Literature student based in Leeds who is juggling the quests for higher education, money and rock hard abs. She believes exercising is a vital part of a healthy, balanced lifestyle and should not be seen as a chore.

As the holiday season creeps up on us, so do the pounds. Many of us will be jetting off to hot countries in order to take a break from our lives; we will be lounging around, soaking up the sun and indulging in local foods. Many of us will also drink a little more than we ordinarily would when we’re back at home.

Due to the break in our diet and exercise regimes, it is normal to gain a few pounds whilst you are away, in fact, it is something which has become expected. I usually put a couple of pounds on myself due to water weight, (the ice cream probably doesn’t help either), but I usually manage to drop that excess weight within a week or two of returning home once I have resumed my normal eating habits and exercise patterns.

If you have worked really hard for your physique and are worried about undoing all of your good work and gaining back the weight that you have lost, then you just need to remember the two golden rules: eat less and move more. Simple. Avoiding unhealthy food can be extremely difficult whilst you are on holiday as temptation seems to be all around; try to steer clear from fried and processed foods whenever possible but if you really are craving something- have it. You are allowed a treat, just not every single day. Try to alternate your treats with healthy salads with grilled chicken or delicious local fresh fish in order to keep any weight gain to a minimum.

Whilst we are on holiday, the alcohol tends to slow a little more freely than it usually would, local lagers and sugary cocktails are always on offer and although both are delicious, they are extremely detrimental to the waistline when they are consumed in excess. Unfortunately for me, I am quite partial to both and although I do allow myself both of these drinks in moderation, I try to stick to clear spirits with a low calorie mixer; with vodka and tonic water currently being my refreshing tipple of choice.

As well as dieting, exercising also becomes difficult whilst holidaying, after all, who wants to spend their entire vacation cooped up in a nearby gym? In a way, that would defeat the entire concept of a holiday. There are, however, a few things you can do in a bid to stay active that will not detract from the amount of time you have for relaxing. On a morning before you hit the pool why not do a couple of reps of stomach crunches, squats or any exercise of your choice that requires no equipment. After a couple of hours of soaking up the sun each day, go for a wander. Don’t restrict yourself to hanging around the pool whilst you are in a new country: walk along the beach or around a market- see what is out there and go exploring! Take advantage of the fact you have a swimming pool at your disposal and do a few lengths every time you take a dip to cool down- it may not be much but it is better than nothing and as long as you’re moving you’re burning calories. Just remember that you are on holiday, enjoy yourself and let loose. If you gain a couple of pounds don’t beat yourself up about it- you’ll lose them just as quickly as you gained them.

Natasha Gelder, full time Literature student based in Leeds who is juggling the quests for higher education, money and rock hard abs