How Do You Eat Right During the Holidays?

The holidays are a stressful time for many people, especially athletes who are surrounded by family who don’t quite understand what it means to fuel your training. How do you eat right during the holidays as an athlete? This blog will explain what nutrition should look like as an athlete during the holidays and how to handle unexpected comments. 

What Does Fueling Look Like Over the Holidays?

The holidays are a great time to be with family and make memories. I used to also view this time as stressful because of the relationship I had with food. It held me back from enjoying the time I had with them and truly being present at holiday events.

We are here to help you navigate this and not have this mindset going into the holidays! This is not the time to restrict yourself from the fun holiday foods that you might have on occasion and miss out on making memories. This time of year is so small in the big picture, so allowing yourself more fun foods will not affect your performance more than the mental toll of restriction will. 

Tips To Eat Right During the Holidays

If you’re wondering “how do you eat right during the holidays?”, here are some ways to keep fueling simple and your nutrition balanced during the holiday season. 

Consistent Eating

To prevent yourself from overfueling, we recommend eating every 2-3 hours. Overfueling can be one of the most stressful situations for athletes so eating consistently can help prevent overfueling and feeling guilt after a meal. Eating every 2-3 hours will also help boost your recovery, especially if you are training. 

We are here with a huge PSA for you, you cannot “save” calories, nor should you!! Saving calories can lead to overfueling later in the day, or improper recovery because you are missing the recovery window to give your muscles what they need. 

Proper Hydration

Hydration is often something that we forget about as our activity decreases or it gets cooler out because our thirst may fall. Even with exercise, it is often hard to tell we are sweating because of the cold temperatures, but that does not mean that we should drink water. 

Drinking 3 large water bottles (32 oz or Hydroflasks) a day will help ensure you are hydrated and you can always add electrolytes if you need some extra support. 

Regular or Less Training

Many athletes we work with believe that they should limit their calories during the holidays because they are taking it “easy” or not training as often as they would. We think that the holidays should actually be looked at in the opposite way! 

The holidays are a great time to allow proper recovery of your body and give an opportunity to increase your energy availability, leading to more potential growth when you begin training again.

We recommend following a rest or practice day plate from the PPM. This will ensure that you are getting all the nutrients you need, but don’t be afraid to throw in a holiday treat or dessert with your meal! 

Tips for how to eat right during the holidays

How to Deal with “Not so Nice” Comments?

When you are an athlete or active person, you have increased needs than your non-active family members. Even if you weren’t an athlete, everyone has different needs! 

Many people don’t understand nutrition like you might, and many people are chronically underfueling. This may lead to some comments made by family members that make you self-conscious about your plate and prevent you from eating as much as you should.

Let me be your cheerleader, food is fuel! This time of year is a point of stress for many, especially if you are close with the people you are seeing and you are attending a lot of events that have been triggering in the past. There is no reason to comment on someone else’s food choices because it might mean a lot more to someone else as it does coming out of your mouth. 

Same goes to comments about appearance, it is time for society to move away from them! If you deal with comments like these coming your way, there are ways you can respond to these comments. 

How to Respond to Holiday Comments

Here are some common phrases that you might hear and some responses that you can say to get out of an uncomfortable spot:


If you are stressed about the holidays, make sure to save this blog! This blog can help you troubleshoot uncomfortable situations while also keeping up with your fueling so you can perform even better after the break. 

We at RBSN encourage this to be a time where you give yourself some grace, physically and mentally, it is okay to have fun foods and it is even better to enjoy them while you eat them! We hope you have a great holiday season with family this year!

If you struggle with fueling properly during the holiday season or need some moral support, apply for our 1:1 coaching! We can help you navigate the holiday season with a food forward positive approach that will help you confidently balance your plate to meet your goals and enjoy the holidays stress free!



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