Fitness goals become harder to maintain during holiday season in South Mississippi

Bandit CrossFit client Whitney Ott is back in the gym after Thanksgiving. She says she's doing...
Bandit CrossFit client Whitney Ott is back in the gym after Thanksgiving. She says she's doing it for herself so, in turn, she can do it for her family.(wlox)
Published: Nov. 26, 2021 at 8:39 PM EST
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BILOXI, Miss. (WLOX) - The holidays may be the hardest time to keep on a healthy course, but the good thing is that even a slip up here and there doesn’t mean all your efforts have gone to waste. And with the help of fitness companies, the challenge can be easier.

Whitney Ott chose a tough time of year to start a serious fitness routine.

“The holidays are a really hard time to start,” she said with a knowing smile.

And they are a really tough time to stay the course.

“You know, it’s really been challenging because there are office parties, or holiday parties and Christmas parties,” Ott said.

And, in the south, there is an extra issue.

“All of the food is really delicious,” she said. “And, there’s extra butter. Yesterday, I was making macaroni and cheese and caught myself adding extra butter to it.”

But Ott has found that the group support system, like that at Bandit CrossFit, is as important as the workout.

“It’s been challenging, but it’s also been uplifting to have a group of people who want to support you even make a decision that isn’t the best decision regarding food,” she said.

Diet is a big part of the program for Bandit CrossFit owner Janice Marie Ferguson, especially during the holidays.

Failure is expected and forgiven.

“If you do eat the cake, it’s a-OK. Eat it,” Ferguson said. “But then get right back on track.”

Ferguson encourages “The Plate Method” which means more vegetables and less starch and protein.

“We want them to have smaller portion sizes and we want them to stay on their routine,” Ferguson said. “That’s why we offer this workout right after. We really don’t close our classes here because we want clients to continue their routine during the holidays.”

Ott said she is doing this for her, so she can, in turn, do it for her family.

“I feel like I’m taking away from my kids or my job,” she said. “But, I have to remember that you can’t fill a cup with an empty cup. So, it’s easier said than done, but that is a reminder that I have to tell myself often.”

Ferguson added that the best to help prevent bad eating habits, especially during the holidays, is to make a plan for sensible meals in the days following the big feast.

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