By Jacques Thibault, Special Olympics BC Sport Consultant
Jacques Thibault, an internationally recognized training and speed skating expert with a Master’s degree in science, works with Special Olympics BC athletes and coaches to help empower them to be their very best.
The holiday season is almost here, and Special Olympics BC programs are also taking a break, so staying in shape will depend entirely on you and the choices you make during the holidays. Here are some tips to help you stay in shape over the festive season:
1. Eat properly
Many holiday foods are full of calories. For example, eggnog is almost 400 calories per serving, so weight yourself often and skip seconds.
2. Stay focused on what you trying to achieve
For many SOBC athletes, these holidays are important because we are just a few months away from Provincial Games and summer-sport Regional Qualifiers. Gaining weight and being inactive can significantly diminish your chances for success later on in the year.
Stay focused on your goals. This does not mean not enjoying the holidays, but having a balanced approach is always the best recipe for success.
3. Ask your coach for a program to do during the holidays
Even if Special Olympics BC programs are also on holidays, many training programs can be done at home. Ask your coach or your Club Fit instructor for exercises to do at home. Flexibility, core strength, and some sport skills can easily be part of the holiday season.
4. Take part in some fun outdoor activities during the holidays
Walking uphill or jogging for an hour burns around 500 calories, building a snowman uses up 300 calories, sledding downhill consumes more than 500 calories per hour (if you’re walking back uphill), and skating, snowshoeing, and cross country skiing all burn around 500 calories per hour. These activities will keep you in great shape and breathing fresh air is awesome for getting a good night’s sleep.
5. Get your sleep and rest
Sleeping properly is often underestimated during the holidays. Late-night gatherings can change sleeping patterns and unfortunately produce unwanted changes that can increase weight and stress, so have fun but remember to get your rest.
Happy holiday season to everyone and wishing you the best success in 2019!