Wednesday, December 17, 2008

De-stress during the holidays

By Courtney Westlake

Tis the season to be stressed!

With the semester coming to an end, finals, holiday to-do lists, holiday parties and more, not to mention trying to stay on top of your health and fitness goals, this is surely a busy time.

"Sometimes it's best just to put things aside and not focus on the things that make us stressed," said Amanda Jillson, assistant director of fitness and instructional programs at the TRAC.

Because the season is so hectic, it can be difficult to find time to fit in your fitness regime. However, it's proven that exercise is great stress reliever.

"It doesn't have to be vigorous cardio," she said. "Exercise can be playing in the snow with your friends or children, cleaning your house or apartment, or you can go for a walk when it's not so bitterly cold out. Fitting it in is always the key to reducing the stress of the holiday season."

"And it doesn't have to be a long workout," Jillson added. "It can be 10 minutes, and you'll feel 100 percent better."

Other tips for combating stress during the holiday season include:
-learn how to say no
-be realistic when making holiday plans and following traditions
-don't strive for perfection
-accept support and help when you need it

Jillson's final food for thought for 2008: clear your mind and try to stay organized. Indulge and don't get down on yourself for doing so.

"Have your ham, cheesy potatoes, chocolate truffles and wonderful holiday cookies," Jillson said. "Don't be so critical of yourself this season. And come the new year, we'll be back to Staying on TRAC!"