January 9, 2018
Zig Ziglar once opened that “The first step in solving a problem is to recognize that it does exist.” If this is true then here it goes, Hi, I am Brandon, and I have a holiday problem. Specifically, I like to try my hardest to stay far away from simple carbohydrates and sugar for 11 months with the occasional cheat snack or meal. I feel that I am fairly regimented in my gym schedule for 11 months with my planned workout days being Monday, Tuesday Wednesday, Friday and Saturday of every week, and again, for 11 months I do fairly well at accomplishing this regiment. Then that magical Thanksgiving day feast is upon my household and I indulge in Sweet Potato Casserole, dressing, cakes and casseroles. The next day, instead of going into detox, I start to get that “Christmas feeling,” and nothing says Christmas like baked sugary goodness. It’s ok, I think, I’ll just make up for it by going extra hard at the gym, until I realize that I have that company Christmas party to go to that night, and my kids are in a play this night, and my family is getting together on that other night and all of a sudden I realize the only regimented part of my workout routine are my consecutive “rest days.” New Years Day has a way of making you reflect upon the decisions you’ve made, and nothing says bad decisions like a pair of pants that fit a little more snug than you remember.
Do you find yourself in this Post Holiday Hangover that I am in? Do you know that you need to eat better, you know that you need to be more structured in making it to the gym, but the train feels like it has completely derailed and your not real sure how to get it back on the tracks? Here are a few tips that I have found useful over the years.
1. Set a date to start your new diet plan. This is a great time to start a plan that you have been considering for a while, because honestly, if not now, then when? Whether this be trying paleo, Renaissance Periodization, Whole 30 or just a return to whatever normalcy was before the holidays began, set a date soon after New Years and get prepared. I usually try to choose the first full week into the New Year (this year it will be Monday, January 8.) Go ahead and start planning what that first week will look like food wise and purchase the foods you will need to execute this new or established plan. In the mean time, try to start weaning yourself from the foods that were once forbidden, but now seem habitual (dessert after every meal.)
2. Consistently visit the gym. It’s ok that your time on that metcon is 2 minutes slower than the last time you did that WOD. Its absolutely acceptable that your back squat was 30 pounds less than the last time that you tried. The most important aspect is that you are there. Those numbers will come back with interest, and you may be surprised that with only a couple of days of regimented training you no longer feel the sluggish, heavy feeling that may have tempted you to not even show up a few weeks ago.
3. Set a gym goal. Whether this be competing in a local competition, bettering your olympic lifts, or improving your score in the Open, nothing makes you fight through the doldrums of winter like a goal that you are dedicated to meeting.
4. Grab an accountability partner. Trust me, we are not alone in our Post Holiday Hangover, and some times we need a kick in the pants by someone else to not let us slide back to our newly established habits. Pair up with someone who will remind you to meet them at the gym for a certain class, monitor what you are eating and will listen when it’s just not a good day (It’s ok to admit it, we all have them, most of us multiple times per week.) The best my diet has ever been was when a couple of accountability partners and I made a group called #teamhealthychoices. Every night we would group text exactly what we had eaten for the whole day. When you know you have to confess to others what food decisions you make in a day, it makes you really consider whether it is worth it to eat that donut or not.
The good news is you have already made the right decision for your life physically by deciding to do Crossfit. Nothing will push you more physically, mentally or emotionally to be the person you aspire to be. Now it’s just about consistency and lack of excuses. Also, the CrossFit Open is February 22, so there is still plenty of time to laser focus on your training and diet so that you can accomplish the outcome you desire in this event.
God Bless and Good Luck!
Coach Brandon Orr