Holidays are hectic, and schedules can be erratic. As stress goes up, exercise and healthy eating are often the first things to go. The Employee Health Promotion Program fitness and nutrition experts offer these tips to help you have a healthy, happy holiday.

Exercise success

  • No excuses: "It's too cold" and "I'm too busy" are not reasons that exempt us from exercise. Make the time. Even 10 minutes is better than nothing.

  • Make it interesting: Use music for entertainment or surround yourself with supportive people. This way, you are less likely to skip exercise.

  • Be consistent: Fitting in a little exercise on some days is better than nothing. It is important to make it a daily habit.

Stress busters

  • Be flexible: Some things don't have to be done perfectly. Compromise and evaluate your priorities.

  • Experience silence: We often do not realize how much stress noise can cause. Turn off the television and radio for an evening or take a walk in a serene place like the Bosque.

  • Volunteer: Helping others may help you deal more effectively with your problems. It may give you a better perspective on your life.

Eating well

  • Treat yourself: Having small treats through the holidays allows you to partake in seasonal indulgences without overdoing it.

  • Never go hungry: Don't skip eating because of a big dinner or party later. Snacks or a small meal earlier in the day will decrease your chances of overdoing it.

  • Hydrate: Water intake tends to decrease in the winter, but we still need this essential nutrient. Drink it throughout the day and more when alcohol consumption is increased.

Contact EHPP at (505) 272-4460, via e-mail or visit Human Resources and click "Wellness."

By Shelley Rael, Health Education consultant
UNM Employee Health Promotion Program