Wanting to stay on track during the holidays? Top tips from Orangetheory’s CEO

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CEO of Orangetheory, Orangetheory holidays, fitness
Lauren Goldasich, the CEO of Orangetheory, is an expert when it comes to balancing fitness, family and work—even when it comes to the holidays. Photo via Matthew Niblett for Bham Now

October through December is easily one of the most exciting, hectic and treat-filled times of the year. When it comes to balancing holiday fun, a family and staying true to your fitness goals, CEO of Orangetheory Lauren Goldasich, gave us some valuable tips.

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Acknowledge a healthy lifestyle as a priority, even during the holidays

Just like how you acknowledge work, family and friends as top priorities in your life, a healthy lifestyle should also be added to the list. It doesn’t have to mean choosing the gym over family time or replacing all the food in your house with flaxseed alternatives. Really, it just starts with a calendar.

Schedule workouts well in advance 📅

“For me, my workout has to happen first thing in the morning and it has to be scheduled on my calendar. Really, what I love about Orangetheory is that when you schedule your class it’s immediately on your calendar.”

Lauren Goldasich, CEO, Orangetheory

Personally, I get frustrated when I miss a workout and quickly feel discouraged. It makes exercise seem like more of a punishment than something you’re doing to fuel your body. However, setting achievable goals ahead of time and respecting when you need a day off helps build a feasible routine.

“I truly love exercise, but it didn’t come immediately. It’s something that happens over time and becomes your routine.

If your goal is to work out four days a week, plan those days ahead of time. Then you don’t feel guilty about planning your Wednesday as an off day. You didn’t miss a workout. You intentionally scheduled a rest day. This allows you to celebrate your workouts and celebrate that you listened to your body. “

Planning meals makes life easier

An easy way to guarantee you’re staying on track is simply not buying food that doesn’t align with your health goals. Lauren doesn’t keep processed or junk food in the house, so her kids know it’s a treat when they do get it.

“The theme here is prioritizing and planning. I have a rotating two weeks of meals that I look ahead to when planning my week and it makes it easy for grocery shopping. It’s about planning and not getting to 5PM and thinking ‘What are we going to eat?’”

Okay, but what about when candy corn starts to hit the grocery store aisles around Halloween and you or your children find yourself reaching for it? Pro-tip: you can’t be tempted if you’re not actually there.

“I also use a grocery delivery service. It’s so much easier because it’s not like I’m going to the grocery store and my kids or I are tempted to reach for candy or other unhealthy options.”

Communicate your goals with your family or friends

Orangetheory holidays
By filling her family in on her health goals, it helps hold Lauren accountable for sticking to them. Photo via Matthew Niblett for Bham Now

The best way to hold yourself accountable—whether during the holidays or in general—is making family and friends aware of your lifestyle.

Lauren’s entire family is incorporated into her health journey. Having conversations about what you’re going to eat together and when you’ve scheduled workouts ensures that everyone’s on the same page.

“It’s more than aesthetics, it’s about creating and modeling healthy habits for everyone. Communication is a way to have accountability. You have someone who you tell, ‘I’m going to do this with you.’”

Not only does sharing your fitness plan hold you accountable, but it also creates the perfect way to spend time with those who are important to you without sacrificing exercise.

“People always ask, ‘How do you balance everything including your social life with your exercise?’ For one, a ton of my friends work out at Orangetheory, so I get to see them, but I’m also working on my health. Working out with your friends or family is a way to take different things in your life that are important to you and combine them.”

Handling the holiday trifecta 🎃 🦃 🎁

Orangetheory holidays
I asked Lauren a lot of questions about staying on track during the holidays, but we couldn’t not discuss our favorite holiday treats, too. Photo via Matthew Niblett for Bham Now

As the seasons begin to change, Lauren likes to step back and think about what it will hold. Sticking to a workout or meal schedule is great, but also recognizing when it needs to change and where you can afford to be flexible will keep you from losing progress.

“Normally on a quarterly basis, I reflect on my schedule and how I would like my ideal week to go. That may include changing my workout time for the season. Again, it’s about planning—I always look ahead to the next week.”

Treats are not off limits 🍰

Taking into account travel plans, parties and sweets in every corner, the holidays can be daunting for health goals. No one wants to give up the cookies, cakes and cocktails, but you don’t want to feel guilty either.

One way Lauren looks at it is that in the 90 days between October and December, Halloween, Thanksgiving and Christmas only fall on three of them.

“If you want to look at it that way and take those three days and decide, ‘You know what, I’m going to take those three days and not worry about it. I’m going to eat what I want.'”

You should enjoy the holidays and not have to anxiously stare at a plate of cookies deciding whether or not to take one. We all have our favorite treats we look forward to around this time—mine is my aunt’s banana cake, and for Lauren, it’s her mom’s chocolate brownies with icing.

“Maybe you’re going to your friend’s holiday party and you know she makes awesome sausage balls. Go ahead and decide prior to the party that you’re going to have two sausage balls.

That way you get to enjoy something you love, but you feel good and in control of your decision. You can either beat yourself up about what you ate or you can say, ‘I chose to do that and I feel good about it.’”

Heading out of town? Your fitness journey doesn’t have to stop.

What we can guarantee: Orangetheory gives you a great workout. What we can’t: that you’ll look this good during your rows. Photo via Matthew Niblett for Bham Now

Of course, a really great benefit to working out with the Orangetheory community is they have over 1000 studios open across the country. If you’re a member, it doesn’t matter if you go to a studio in California or Colorado.

But, if you don’t have access to a studio, you can still get the same benefits from another workout thanks to Orangetheory’s OTBeat Performance Trackers.

“One of the effects of shutdowns during the pandemic is Orangetheory’s at home workouts. Now, if I’m going somewhere where I’m not already going to be active, I’ll plan my workouts on the Orangetheory app.

I make sure I take my OTbeat Performance Tracker. I can do a workout anywhere and get my heart-rate reading on my phone because the workout syncs up and works outside the studio.”

Since Orangetheory’s workouts are science-backed, you know you can feel good about your workout instead of googling a random exercise and not knowing if it’s actually legit. For those unfamiliar, Orangetheory’s workouts place you in five different heart rate zones distinguished by color.

The goal is to spend 12 or more minutes with your heart elevated in the Orange Zone. Once you’ve accomplished this, you can give yourself a high five because it’s clear you just got a killer workout in.

So, even when you’re not in the studio, the science and community behind Orangetheory make certain you still have a team supporting you the whole way.

Learn more about Lauren and her tips for an active + healthy lifestyle by following her Instagram and Facebook.

Inside and outside the studio your fit fam is cheering you on. Follow along on Instagram to see how the Orangetheory team is making fitness goals a reality at these locations:

The best way to keep up with your goals is by joining the Orangetheory team. Head over to Orangetheory’s website to sign up today for your first FREE class.

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