• Ben Banbury

How to stay lean this Christmas and still enjoy yourself

I absolutely love Christmas. Everyone's in a much better mood, we all have more time off work, there's more family time and of course there's a load of great food! But how can you stay on track?

For most, me included, Christmas is the best time of the year.

I love how it brings families and friends together to celebrate.

I love working less and spending more time sitting on my ass in the warm.

I love eating turkey off the bone and sipping red wine like king Henry V|||.

I love the cheesy music (In fact, as I write this I've got George Michael blaring out some Wham festive goodness)

It's amazing! But 99% of the activities we participate in revolve around food.

So hopefully I can help keep your goals in check over the festive period

How to still enjoy yourself

When I first got into the gym and healthy eating, I took it to the extreme.

I remember having water on my cereal as I'd read milk was bad! I also ate steamed chicken, broccoli and brown rice three times a day.

But unfortunately I was also the guy who wanted to eat cleanly for the Christmas holidays.

It was rubbish, I genuinely remember thinking that Christmas wasn't the same and I'd missed out on all the good stuff.

I think it was the 28th December. I said f*ck it and pounded down maybe 4 mince pies and a couple tablespoons of double cream.

Now that's Christmas!

I'm not saying you should do this for the whole of December, because you'd destroy the whole of 2018's hard work!

But I genuinely believe you should say f*ck it Christmas day, Boxing day and maybe new years.

The average person consumes 6,000 calories on Christmas day! That's around 4x what most women need! (haha, that's amazing!)

Here are my thoughts:

It's not necessarily Christmas that destroys your results, but the habits they create.

My 4 mince pie and double cream combo stuck. I had a bowl everyday into early Jan. I almost had to ween myself off of them!

Your eating habits go crazy around this time. Everything revolves around food and booze, which makes your fat loss goal a tad tricky.

I would highly recommend that you start (or continue, if you've been reading my other blogs) using MyFitnessPal to log everything over the holidays.

I would also place your calories at maintenance. This means you'll be able to eat 500 calories extra a day!


It means you won't be in a calorie deficit. You won't be burning fat. You'll be staying at your current weight.

But at least you can enjoy the festive period without destroying your hard work!

And forget logging Christmas and Boxing day!

For the hardcore

For those who want to continue to drop fat over Christmas, then carry on logging your food, but aim for a calorie deficit.

You can also:

  • Up your cardio for December, and go for a long walk Christmas and boxing day

  • Skip a meal. You're going to seriously overeat and drink lunch and dinner right? So skip breakfast. you might save between 300-400 calories!

  • Just stick to meat and veg for Christmas lunch

  • Avoid aimlessly grazing on crimbo chocolates

  • Avoid booze (boring)

At the end of the day it's your Christmas, it's your body and they're your goals!

Let's be honest. You will most likely put on a bit of weight over Christmas. But you also want to enjoy yourself. So you need to find a sweet spot and work your ass off in Jan!

On that note..

In January I'll be releasing my online training!