Thursday, December 15, 2011

I'm Dreaming of a Fit Christmas - Healthy Stocking Stuffers

Doing this Christmas Challenge got me thinking. And dreaming...of a fit Christmas.

Those of you who know me from the Bitter Orange & Brown blog already know how much I love to go all Weird Al and change up song lyrics to suit my purpose. (Don't worry though - I won't be sporting any creepy Al hair - or mustache - anytime soon.) Today that means taking White Christmas to another level. With apologies to Irving Berlin and Bing Crosby, who will hopefully not be rolling over in their graves after this, here's "I'm Dreaming of a Fit Christmas":

I'm dreaming of a fit Christmas
Unlike the ones I used to know
Want my belts to buckle
And the chance to chuckle
'Bout the way my season used to go

I'm dreaming of a fit Christmas
With every cookie I don't bite
May your days be merry and light
And may you keep the eggnog out of sight.

Dreaming of this fit Christmas also had me pondering my Christmas stocking. Every year my family and I have ours filled with plenty of chocolate and a couple of small gifts. All except for the holiday before my husband and I got married. I collected fast food ketchup packets for weeks and filled a stocking entirely with ketchup for him. But I digress.

I want some healthier goodies in my sock this year. A couple of small chocolate treats would be fine, but not enough to put me into sugar overload for the new year. So I've come up with the perfect stocking stuffers for your favorite fitness enthusiast (or me, if you place a cheery stocking on my porch...ha ha) so they can start 2012 off right:

1. Protein/Energy Bars These will give them the energy they need without the crash all of that sugar would bring.

2. Gift Cards for Trader Joe's or Whole Foods Eating healthy can get expensive on a tight budget, so your friend or family member would REALLY appreciate these!

3. Gift Certificates for Exercise Classes These costs also add up over time. Give the gift of spin, yoga, Pilates, or Zumba classes...or any other activity your loved one enjoys.

4. Non-slip Hair Bands It's a pain for women to have hair falling in their faces while working out, which I know from experience. Even when you pull it into a ponytail, shorter hairs fall or stick out unless you keep them in place with one of these bands. There are more expensive versions out there, but Goody makes some that work just as well...they come 3 or 4 to a pack for about 5 bucks and can be found in most grocery/drug stores.

5. Fitness DVDs When you can't make it to the gym or a class, DVDs are a lifesaver. My favorites are Bob Harper and Jillian Michaels workouts, along with the Dancing With The Stars series. You don't need a partner to learn the cardio/ballroom moves, and it's so much fun you almost forget you're working out.

6. Resistance Bands These roll up well enough to fit into a stocking, and are useful for stretching and toning when away from home or in a hurry.

7. ToeSox These socks are a necessity for Pilates. They keep you from slipping while you perform moves in various positions, but your toes are still able to function. They come in a toeless version, plus a full sock with separate, individual toe room. You can order ToeSox on their website, or go to a local Pilates studio since most of them keep socks on hand (or foot) to sell.

8. The Good Old-Fashioned Orange This is a tradition that goes way back, and it's always a healthy treat. Just don't get those "chocolate oranges" ...they're not all that great and defeat the purpose. Get the real thing!

This should help you shop for the people in your life who want to get or stay fit. Or you can pass this list on to your own family to shop for you. I hope all of your stockings are filled to the brim with healthy gifts!

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