In our world, Christmas is on 25 December. But if you live in Armenia apparently it’s on 6 January, or in Ethiopia, Russia, Ukraine, Serbia, the birth of Christ is celebrated on 7 January. The most important thing is that wherever in the world you reside there is one thing in common when it comes to Christmas – it’s only one day. Not a week or a month, just one day.
For most of New Zealanders, however, this year Christmas will probably start around lunchtime on Friday the 18 December when the office resonates to the sound of a champagne cork bouncing off the photocopier, and finish celebrations some time after New Years Day.
For many, ‘Christmas’ translates loosely to ‘hammer the heck out of yourself for a month or so’. Every opportunity that presents itself for us to socialise is our cue to consume our own bodyweight in alcohol, and to eat enough cheesecake to launch us into glycemic shock.
But let’s keep it real – Christmas is actually not a month-long religious holiday, it’s only one day (or two if you want to stretch to include Boxing Day!).
There’s a paradox here that we should remind ourselves of. We spend most of the year complaining that we
a) don’t have enough time to exercise;
b) it’s too cold;
c) it’s too dark;
d) it’s too early;
e) your friends are busy so you have to train on your own.
Christmas holidays are the best time to be exercising and looking after yourself because most of the above-mentioned roadblocks tend not to apply during the summer holiday period.
If you have a few drinks one night, you don’t have to race out of bed the next morning. The weather is generally warm and inviting, and more often than not your friends are available to exercise with you. In this season there’s usually a whole lot of outdoor activities on offer, particularly if you are close to a beach or a national park. And remember, when celebrating it’s not all cheesecake and pavlova – there’s plenty of healthy food on offer, you just have to look for it and make healthy decisions.