How I Stay Fit (and Motivated) During the Holidays, by Julianne Hough
When we think of someone with boundless energy, who manages to stay fit while balancing a fast-paced career and social life, and looks as amazing on the red carpet as she does hiking with her dogs, the person that comes to mind is Julianne Hough.
You can’t help but fall in love with the pint-sized girl-next-door who was on Dancing With The Stars, kills it on the dance floor, and has the kind of bubbly, life-of-the-party personality we'd legitimately want to hang out with.
If you follow her on Instagram, you know she posts candid videos of herself goofing off with friends and family, dancing up a storm, traveling, and working out, and you quickly learn two things: She never stops moving, and she has one incredible body.
That’s why we were ecstatic to nab the triple-threat singer/actress/dancer as our newest celebrity contributor, right in time for the new year. Whether it's deciding to cut her hair into a pixie on a complete whim or bursting into spontaneous dance wars while cooking to burn a few extra calories, Hough is the Byrdie girl through and through.
Here, in her first column, she covers how she stays fit during the holidays—a notorious time for overindulgence—and also shares her fitness and beauty resolutions for 2015. Keep reading for her secrets!
Hi Byrdie readers! I’m so excited to have this space to talk with you about all things health, fitness, and beauty. With Christmas and a brand new year around the corner, I’m focusing on staying healthy during a time of parties and overindulgence, and planning my 2015 goals.
If anybody knows me and my family, they know we do “dance wars” over Thanksgiving and Christmas, so literally we are coming up with dances while we are cooking. So we just keep active and move around (see what I mean in the video below).
That’s a very specific thing that I do, but also, for me it’s mind over matter. When I’m so concerned about my weight and not eating, I want to eat more. In the past, if I think it’s so “naughty” to binge over the holidays, then I eat so much and get so full and feel gross. Now, I eat what I want, but because it’s okay to eat it, I actually don’t eat as much as I would if it was a bad thing. When you think something is off-limits you just want it more. Now, I eat pie if I want it, and I just stop when I’m full.
When I do overindulge over the holidays, like if it’s been a fun party with drinking and dancing all night, I always need to sweat it out the next day. But sometimes, if I’m not feeling up to working out, I’ll take care of my body by going to Voda Spa where I get to go in the sauna and steam room, and sweat it out that way. It makes me feel energized and refreshed, so that the next day I’m ready to rock.
In terms of fitness, I love hiking, so I’ll go on hikes and do the stairs. This also may sound funny, but like with the dance wars we do, I do exercises all day long. I don’t just have a “time to work out” where I work out for 45 minutes and then am done for the day. I’ll literally just randomly do squats here and there throughout the day, or do a couple of sit-ups while I’m sitting around, and rotate it throughout the day. So for my butt, literally while I’m doing my makeup or hair I will just do leg lifts, and I’ll do squats while I’m brushing my teeth, and when I’m walking around I’ll put ankle weights or wrist weights on. When I talk to people on the phone I do lunges outside. If you keep doing it throughout the day, you’re working out all day but you’re actually not really.
I love lunges and squats. I also really love doing stuff with bands and ankle weights, like Tracy Anderson exercises, where you’re on your hands and knees and you do leg lifts to the back and to the side. That’s what I do for my butt.
When I just want to stay in bed, the thing that motivates me is knowing that I’m going to be in a better mood, for my dogs, for my meeting, for me.
My 2015 beauty resolution is to get my hair back healthy and growing. I cut it into a pixie this year (it was a totally spur of the moment decision!), so I’m trying to grow it out and do it in a very healthy way without extensions. I’m also getting my brows fuller, where I usually wax them, on the brow arch. I’m going to do them fuller and feathered with Kristie Streicher. 2015 is all about the hair! And the brow. My fitness resolution is to make diet and workout more of a lifestyle rather than getting ready for a project in an all-or-nothing mindset. In the past, I’ve been on a low-carb, high-protein, high-veggie diet and working out six or seven times a week, and then I burn out. So my goal this year is to achieve more balance. Maybe I only work out three times a week, and that’s okay: It doesn’t have to be all or nothing!
How do YOU stay healthy and fit this time of year? What do you want to hear more about from me in 2015? Let me know in the comments below! Have a great rest of 2014, and may you ring in the new year doing what makes you happiest!