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Let me start with a quick congratulations of the implied good news: You have been making gains in the gym! That’s great! It tells me that you have established some good habits, developed a routine, and you’ve paid at least a little bit of attention to your intake.
This is a terrific question, and one that I’ve been asked many times over the years. My answer has, admittedly, mellowed out as I’ve aged — so you’re in luck! Whereas I used to be much more hardcore and I’d have answered with a question of my own, such as, “Well, how badly do you want to be awesome?!” Hahaha. While I understand what younger me meant, I’ve come to realize that there is a lot more to enjoy around the holidays besides just the weightroom — and that we can get away with some intake “transgressions.” So, here are a few guidelines which you can keep in mind over the next few weeks which should allow you to both enjoy some holiday cheer AND keep the progress for which you have worked so hard.
HOWEVER, if you enjoy a drink and can do so responsibly, then you must treat it as a special occasion, and not a regular occasion. Again, you can’t fit into the 80/20 rule if you are intaking multiple drinks every day. Those are empty calories that our bodies don’t know what to do with, so they are stored as fat. In fact — you could actually call alcohol the “bodyfat gateway,” because not only do the alcohol calories eventually become fat, but when we drink, our willpower lowers and decision-making becomes questionable, so we just may convince ourselves that eating an entire pizza at midnight is somehow a good idea. SPOILER: It’s not a good idea, nor should it be considered as “mass-gaining” (nice try, though. Haha).
Conclusion: Eat, drink, be merry, and exercise!
Just keep that metabolic bonfire moving with consistent fat-burning and good intake to help burn the bad. The reality is that unless you have a photoshoot, bodybuilding competition, or a wedding the first week in January, then enjoying the holidays a bit is not going to set you back in the big picture. Actually, it can be beneficial to you as a break/restart/refresher so you get back to your normal routine with renewed enthusiasm.
Enjoy, and Happy Holidays!