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Tis’the season!

Well, it’s that time of year again, fuck knows how that happened so fast but christmas is upon us.

It’s always a funny’ol time for us in the fitness industry, it can be very unpredictable with how busy we are. Obviously the two weeks over the christmas period as with any industry can be very quiet. But with the lead up to christmas full of parties and socials in the city, they can have a knock on effect with your training.

Now I’m all for Christmas parties, festive fun days, end of year “meetings” in the local pub by the fire with real ale and home made scotch eggs, and I’ll be honest the odd all out bender.

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We ourselves at Evolve like to reward our staff with a Christmas do, this year aptly named “The Beer-lympics ’you can imagine how competitive this one will be (If you were wondering, I’ll win. I may have lost the Rowvember challenge but challenge me at a pub game and you’re on my home turf boy) As well as The Evolve Christmas party at the gym, it’s already looking like a busy social schedule for the EOM boys. Obviously we need to keep on top of our physiques and not rock up in the new year looking like plump little pigs.

So, with that being said, here are my top tips for surviving the christmas onslaught of booze and beige buffets.

 

1 – Don’t stop training.

The amount of people I see this time of year that stop training towards the end of November with the reason ‘Well it’s christmas so I’ll get back on it in the new year. Ok, so Christmas is still 5 weeks away, then you won’t be back till mid Jan, so you’re looking at 8 weeks of not training just because of one day when we all (Except vegans, and what the fuck is a nut roast?) eat Turkey, give each other shit presents we found in the pound shop and apparently some little baby who could turn water into wine was born a couple thousand years ago (That is quite a good trick in my book by the way) So 6-8 weeks of not training, do you know how fat I can get in 6-8 weeks when I’m not training. My advice would be keep training up to the point you leave work for christmas, even if you need to cut down a bit, no problem but the worst thing you can do is stop too soon, weights still need to be lifted in December, wear a christmas hat if it makes you feel better. Also this will make the glorious return in January all the more glorious rather than shuffling around the gym all hoofing and sweating like a weak little piglet and feeling like arse holes.

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2 – Giving up on your diet because of so many socials.

Now I may be guilty of this myself, which is why I’m more within my right to tell you not to do it, because I was wrong!

Count them up, how many christmas social events do you already have in your calendar? Off the top of my head right now I can count 6 over December up to the point I go home for christmas, Ok so you may have more than me I don’t have that many friends, so let’s say you have 8 even, and let’s say they are only evening events. There are 31 days in December to eat well, let’s minus 3 right off for christmas eve, christmas day and boxing day, so then we have 8 socials that are just evenings so you’ll only be on the sauce for half the day, so boil it down to 4 bad days of hurting yourself with booze and food. That’s still only 7 days of shit food, out of 31, you do the math. Instead of hoovering up everything you can see, necking booze left right and centre and trying it on with that girl from the office, be a bit more considered about working your nutrition around the days you know are going to be shit, and who am I kidding, you should definitely try it on with that girl from the office! *Disclaimer, don’t blame me if it goes wrong, we can’t all have my legendary chat #ladsladslads

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3 – Don’t beat yourself up

Not literally, I mean don’t be hard on yourself for having a drink and some nice food, after all tis’the season! You’ve worked hard all year, well I hope so, otherwise Santa Claus won’t bring you any gains! If you’ve been tearing the arse out of the gym all year, then you need a break, your body needs a break, your mind needs a break, 2 weeks off will do you the world of good. Rest your muscles, your tendons and ligaments, ease off the diet and allow yourself to let loose a little, enjoy a good Christmas feed then get back to being a bad-ass in the new year. If you feel inclined to train then great, an old colleague of mine used to run 10 miles every Christmas morning, i mean, fuck that, but if you do feel up for a bit of a knock over the Christmas period then bang away but don’t beat yourself up if you just take the time to rest.

 

4 – Winter is bulking season.

OK so this one is more to justify the extra calories. So why not use these colder winter months, all padded out with chunky knits and gillets as an opportunity to put some size on. Fuck the summer calorie deficit where we all want abs on show for the beach, get yourself into a winter bulk, not a dirty bulk, but up the calories from the right macros and smash the shit out of the weights to pack some mass on. Give yourself about 5kg of moving about weight and don’t worry too much about your body fat % then come April see where you’re at and start shedding the fat. The winter bulk is always a good way to be a little less hard on yourself over the festive period, and crank up the gains!

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5 – Lift weights, drink beer and be fucking merry.

Because it’s what Jesus/Arnold would have wanted .

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Words by Lee Bennett