How To Deal With The Holidays

I take my own advice, as well.  I never tell my clients to do something that I don't personally do.

I strongly believe that if you aren't training for a show during the holidays that you should enjoy family, friends and food within moderation.  It isn't enjoying the food that is the problem, it's when there is no control and the wheels come off.

Enjoying food and not feeling guilty about it is having a healthy relationship with food.  We all have our goals and they are important to us, but proving to everyone how hardcore you are at the holidays -- to your family and friends -- shouldn't be the main point of the holidays.  We can justify to each other that we aren't "normal" and we want to stay structured but building memories with family and friends at the holidays should be more important than offending someone who feels that you are better than eating the food they worked so hard to prepare.

On the other hand, I will agree that staying structured at what is usually the most stressful time of the year, can have its benefits.  So, while eating regular food when you are having a get together with family and friends is a good thing, you do still want to train to stay on track in the gym and use it to help you keep stress levels low, as well.

My advice for training is that if you can still train around the holidays and not have it interfere with getting together with friends and family, then by all means do it.  I just strongly advise against opting for a training session instead of a family get together.  You can always pick up that training session the following day.  It isn't like it happens frequently for most of us, anyway.  The holidays are usually the exception and, again, the large majority of us are in off season mode at this time of the year, anyway.

If you are prepping for a show then that's a different story.  You shouldn't make any accommodations if that is the case because if you do, you could find yourself standing on stage wondering if you should have approached your plan better and that is not a good feeling to have while standing on stage.  You want no stone left unturned when you step on stage and hopefully the people closest to you understand this about you.

There are also some people who are in relationships where the other person isn't terribly supportive of their bodybuilding endeavors.  If this is the case, you basically have 2 options:

1. you can hold out and force your situation on your family or spouse and cause resentment and possibly even an argument or fight

2. you can give in a little bit and compromise and keep the peace

I can't possibly know what your best option is so that is for you to determine.

I hope that everyone has a great Holiday Season and that you build memories with family and friends -- I know I will.  That workout or two isn't going to mean the difference between you being successful or failing so understand that as much as we all enjoy bodybuilding, it isn't very exciting if you have no one that supports you.  Keep your family in mind when you make these decisions around the holidays.



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