How to survive Christmas welcomes a new columnist to the fold this month - Australian two-time world champion Jo King. This month she offers some insights on how to stay fit and healthy through the holiday season.

| December 20, 2018 | TRAINING

Jo King racing in the Australian Formula One Series back in the day.

Jo King racing in the Australian Formula One Series back in the day.

Photo >courtesy Jo King

She's back in the game. Jo King surged onto the triathlon scene as a junior - a year after she started in the sport she became world junior champion and then, a few years later, took the world senior title as well. Her career spanned all distances - she also won in Nice and took Ironman Germany back when it took place in Roth. After a long break from the sport, King is back and has started her own coaching business in Australia. looks forward to a series of columns from the Australian legend - enjoy her first on staying on top of things through the holiday season:

There is plenty of festive cheer this time of year and yes, even you, can survive it and still come out other end in some sort of shape.

As a kid, the magic of Christmas was incredible to me. The fact that Santa knew where I lived, read my letters and was always able get me what I wished for.

Now as a parent myself, it’s so awesome that the world’s biggest lie is still alive and well.

Santa, in our house, is certainly a very welcome visitor as is ‘elf on the shelf’. A very recent (the last two years in our house) addition to the lead up to Christmas. It’s nice to be able to check on the internet what other creative elves have been up to – especially at 2 AM when you suddenly realise Elf hasn’t been moved from the night before!

While the incredible innocence and magic of Christmas is so special, for us mere mortals, surviving Christmas can be quite exhausting. Especially if you intend to attend every social function you have been invited to. For some strange reason, the tradition, and often urgency, to catch up with people before Christmas continues.

Yes, we all know the world is not ending on Christmas Day, and we know we can still see people after the festive season, but, Christmas is a time of odd traditions.

Like…. having roast chicken, roast pork … everything hot … a logical tradition for the countries that find themselves in the middle of winter, but not for a (sometimes) mid-30 degree summer day in Australia.

The real joy of Christmas should be about drinking and eating as much as you can, (joke!). No, in all seriousness, it should be a great opportunity to do what makes it special for you on that day.

Photo >courtesy Jo King

Here’s a few tips you should try to remember at this time of the year:

  • Christmas comes around once a year, allow yourself to enjoy some yummy food and to catch up with friends and family.
  • If your “tradition” is to enjoy a meal together with family and friends at Christmas, go around the table and ask each person what their highlight was for the year.
  • It’s OK to exercise on Christmas day. An hour a day keeps the doctor away…it will help you survive Christmas day and, remember, you won’t lose any fitness in one day.
  • You can say no to some Christmas break-ups/catch-ups – enough is enough sometimes.
  • Don’t be the last one to leave, it’s nice to still be able to something the next day.
  • When it comes to food and alcohol, don’t abstain from anything – a little bit of everything won’t hurt you.

Have a great Christmas everyone and look forward to more fitness and training tips in 2019.