Here in the U.S., the next few weeks are going to be filled with a lot of feasting and festivities, which can make it hard to stay on track with your health and fitness goals. At the same time, for most of us, eating well and staying active helps us manage stress and better enjoy time with loved ones. And it helps in your diabetes management, too. The good news is, you don’t have to get pulled into the end of year sugar vortex. Here are five activities you can enjoy with family and friends without tossing your healthy habits out the window.
1. Give to Charity
Choose a charity close to your heart, and invite your family and friends to join you in volunteering your time or expertise (as well as funding, if you’re able). Visit volunteermatch.org to find an organization that shares your passion.
2. Get Outside
Cold weather doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy the outdoors and get some exercise. Grab your loved ones, bundle up, and grab your skis, snowboard, or ice skates. If you don’t live in a snowy climate, visit your favorite summer hiking or biking trail and find the beauty in looking at it in a different season. Those of us with less coordination can always enjoy a walk around the neighborhood or in a local park. Don’t forget your MiniMed Connect  so you can keep your pump tucked away while checking your diabetes data in the cold!
3. Create a Healthy Calendar
Make a healthy calendar for a certain number of days that’s meaningful to you. For each day, write down a healthy habit to practice. Thirty minutes of exercise. Five servings of fruits/vegetables. Remembering to bolus  before each meal/snack. Make your goals reasonable and achievable to keep yourself motivated. Include your family in the fun with a team “score sheet” and celebrate your collective successes.
4. Organize a Healthy Gift Exchange
Add a health and wellness theme to your annual gift exchange. Jump ropes, pedometers, water bottles, and a low-carb recipe books are inexpensive yet useful gifts.
5. Attend a Holiday Event while Getting In Your Steps
Museums, parades, walking tours and outdoor festivals are all good ways to get in extra steps. Check your local community social media sites or newspaper for seasonal exhibits and activities.