How to keep healthy habits during the Easter Weekend

It is Easter time and many of you will be travelling either locally or overseas. It is common to reduce your activity levels and ease up on your diet when travelling, which can set you back once the holiday is over. You do not need to derail your healthy habits when away. Just keep the following in mind to make some healthier choices:

1. Make smart food choices
When we travel we tend to forget about our 5-a-day. Avoid the holiday bulge by making smart choices throughout the day.

Bring fruit and nuts as snacks when you are out and about. It is good to have some backup snacks in your pocket when you are sightseeing. It can be difficult to find healthy snacks in some tourist areas so make sure you are getting nutritious bites in between your meals. Make your own trail mix with nuts, seeds and a little bit of dried fruit and pack them in small ziplock bags for grab-and-go yumminess.

Avoid sugary and salty hotel breakfasts that contain sausages, flapjacks, sweetened cereals and flavoured yoghurt. Chose more nutritious options such as an omelette filled with veggies, low GI cereals with plain yoghurt and fruit or whole-wheat toast with cold meats and cottage cheese.

Stay hydrated with water, as opposed to drinks that are loaded with sugar, colorants and other unnatural ingredients. Drinking high-energy drinks takes unnecessary calories from your daily allowance, without giving you nutrition. Always carry a bottle of water with you to stay hydrated and healthy.

Make healthy choices as often as possible but enjoy some of the treats the Easter Bunny brings. Just remember: moderation is key!

2. Keep active
When we are on holiday, we tend to lounge around and stay sedentary. Try getting some activity in every day to get the heart rate up. Opt to walk or bicycle to explore sites, as opposed to driving. Find out if the area you are vacationing to has some fun activities that you can do such as hiking, kayaking, windsurfing or mountain biking. Small efforts add up and it is just a matter of getting a little bit of movement in every day.

There are also many bodyweight exercises that are easy to do in a hotel room or garden. Create a circuit of 4 or 5 exercises that you repeat for 4 or 5 rounds. Chose from bodyweight squats, push-ups, burpees, sit-ups, lunges, plank, star jumps and so on. Mix up the circuit every day to work different muscle groups.

3. Enjoy some off time
Keep your mind and soul healthy by relaxing and switching off. Stay off-line from social media, your phone and TV and enjoy a good book, magazine or conversation with your family or friends instead. Holiday time is there to be enjoyed so sleep-in, eat some treats, drink some wine but keep a good balance. Stick to the 80/20 rule where you eat healthily and exercise 80% of the time and treat yourself 20% of the time.

It is easy to derail your healthy habits when you are on holiday. Sightseeing, breakfast buffets and long nights with wine and friends interrupt the daily routine you have when working. It is important to give yourself a well-deserved break, but you should also try to make a few healthy choices during the day that the future you will thank you for. Maintain some healthy eating habits and chose to exercise when possible to mitigate the Easter-chocolate-gut.

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