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I LOVE Christmas and all of the socialising and parties that come with it. But it can be difficult trying to stay healthy during the festive season. Here are some tips to help you stay healthy and not ruin all of your hard work:

1. Control your alcohol intake

I know it’s probably already a given that you will be drinking alcohol. One thing you need to know about alcohol is that when consumed, your body will burn this off before any food and it will take a long time to do this. Any food you eat while you are drinking or afterwards will most likely be stored as fat. I’m not saying not to drink, but make sure you eat something healthy before drinking. This will prevent you from snacking on deep fried and unhealthy foods while drinking.

Also remember that alcohol and mixers contain a lot of calories and sugar. If you do drink, try to avoid sugary mixers such as soft drink and juice (unless it is freshly squeezed!). Your best bets are red wine, vodka lime and soda and gin and tonic.

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2. Stay active!

Now more than ever, exercise is important. Do you know that when you exercise, you are more likely to eat healthier that day? If you’re planning on a night out, do some extra cardio that morning or the night before, or both! And make the cardio intense. HIIT sprinting or a spin class are my favourites.

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3. Avoid deep fried food

There will be plenty of unhealthy foods on offer during the festive season. I know it will be tempting but try to choose the healthy options. Avoid deep fried foods, white carbs and fatty meats.

Most parties will have some healthy snacks such as crackers with dips (avocado and hummus dips are great), olives, seafood (not deep fried!), vegetables, fruit, nuts and lean meat. Alternatively, if you’re going to a dinner party, bring your own healthy dish!

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4. Avoid the food table

When you’re at a party, avoiding hanging around the food table. You will be more tempted to eat it when it’s right in front of you. Out of sight, out of mind. Easy done!

5. The day before and after your party

The day before and after your Christmas party, make sure you eat as healthy as possible. No junk food allowed! And as I mentioned before, do some extra cardio the day before and/or after to burn off some calories! Just remember that it is highly unlikely that you will ever be able to exercise off all of the calories you have consumed from alcohol and processed food.

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Rachael is an Australian born certified personal trainer and nutritionist who holds a Bachelor degree in Science.

After struggling for years to find an exercise and diet program that is tailored to women striving for lean and toned body with no bulk she designed her Lean Legs Program. This program is tailored to each body type and focused on helping women get toned but feminine bodies, without getting bulky.

Her mission is to empower women and help them stay in shape in a healthy and balanced way.

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