STAYING FIT AND HEALTHY DURING THE HOLIDAYS

With the holidays coming up, the highlight for many people during this season is gathering with family and friends and enjoying favorite holiday treats. Here are some tips that will help you enjoy your holidays to the fullest while not increasing your waistline.

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MAKING AND KEEPING NEW YEARS RESOLUTIONS

Only 8 percent of individuals achieved their resolutions in 2016, according to Statistic Brain. This is likely due to most people having unrealistic expectations about the speed, ease and consequences of the resolutions they make. People attempting self-change rarely succeed the first time; most need five or six attempts, according to a paper published in American Psychologist by Janet Polivy and Peter Herman. The authors suggest false hope syndrome is the cause for failure.

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HEALTHY HOLIDAY OPTIONS

The holidays are a wonderful time to gather with family and friends to celebrate. These celebrations often consist of many delicious treats and hardy meals. You can still maintain a healthy diet with a little thought and planning in advance. Research from a recent Web-based survey found 18 percent of people feel they cannot eat healthily during the holidays because they don’t want to miss out on their favorite foods. You can still eat the foods you enjoy this season, just in moderation.

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•  Local Museums

Learn some history by visiting a local museum. Let your children engage and educate themselves on a particular subject, period or area. Experiences such as a museum visit can become a meaningful part of a child’s identity and contribute to successful socialization. Many museums offer free or discounted admission during certain hours or on certain days.


•  Zoo or Aquarium

Explore wildlife by visiting the local zoo or aquarium. This is a wonderful learning experience that allows children to study animals in a simulation of their natural environments.


There are many amazing places in your area your family can go explore for free or at a low cost. Check with your local chamber of commerce or visitors center for more ideas. This summer, make it your goal to get out of the house to learn about and explore your local area. Your children will have fun, and you will, too, as you watch them expand their horizons. The opportunities are limitless.

With summer quickly approaching, you’re probably looking for family friendly activities in which everyone can participate. Instead of planning a big family vacation, you could choose to take a few fun day trips. These trips are usually less expensive and less time consuming than a full-out vacation. Enjoy a full day of activities provided by some of the local attractions in your city.


To discover what is within your area, go online and search TripAdvisor or other Web sites that provide similar content. Look for discounts – a certain day of the week might be cheaper to go visit an attraction than another. Be sure you have all your necessities ready before you venture out: your tickets, snacks for the drive there and back and clothing suitable for whatever activity you may be doing, such as swimwear, hats and sunscreen. Bring plenty of water, especially if you will be spending a lot of time outdoors. You need to stay hydrated.


Here are a few attractions you can visit that are in most cities or just a short drive away:


•  Fire or Police Station

Many fire and police stations offer free tours. Call your local fire or police department, tell them about your interest in touring the facility and set a date and time. This will allow children to have an educational

FUN DAY TRIPS TO TAKE WITH YOUR CHILDREN

TANIQUA WARD, M.S.

TaNiqua Ward is a staff writer for Health & Wellness magazine.

more articles by taniqua ward

experience as well as learn safety tips.


•  Library

During the summer, many libraries have programs for children that entail storytelling, movies and crafts. Children can get their own library cards and check out books themselves. A weekly trip to the library can form a lifetime habit of reading.


•  Waterpark or Amusement Park

The local waterpark or amusement park is the perfect place to go to let loose and have some fun, especially when it gets hot. Again, you’ll want to pack plenty of sunscreen and hats when you go and also bring water.


•  State Park

Enjoy nature at a local state park. This is a wonderful way to bond with your family in the great outdoors. Pack a picnic and have lunch outside. Embark on a nature hike or bring your fishing poles if there’s a lake. You can even enjoy fun physical activities such as soccer or football or you can bring a board game or play cards.