The 2015 Tulip Festival is finally here! I know some of you have been waiting all year for these next 3 days. The food, the tulips, the tourists! Ahh, life in Pella during Tulip Time is great, isn’t it?
If you’ve been working hard at getting in shape this year, it’s easy to let Tulip Time derail your progress. Three days of binge eating on funnel cakes and poffertjes can’t be good on the waistline. All of those carbs head straight to your belly, you know this, right?
But hey, I’m realistic. Tulip Time only comes around once every year so I’m not expecting you to refrain from your Tulip Time food of choice. I’m sure you’ll see me walking around with a plate of poffertjes or enjoying a Dutch taco. But if you want to keep yourself from packing on a few extra pounds during the next 3 days, then I’ve got 5 tips for you to stay fit during Tulip Time.
- Allow yourself to have your treat of choice. Let’s face it, you’re going to walk by the funnel cake stand and you won’t be able to resist. So allow yourself to have one and only one. Even better, split it with someone else. You surely don’t need all of those calories, so why not share the wealth with someone you love. But here’s the key – you need to stop at one. Remember, these are tips to help you stay fit, not tips for you to eat like a pig and tell your fitness goals to take a hike for 3 days. So have your treat and then be done. Keep this in the back of your head, “If you don’t want your waist to bulge, then don’t over-indulge.”
- Avoid calorie-filled beverages. If you’re going to eat your treats, definitely don’t add more calories by drinking them too. Drink water. If you’re buying food uptown, don’t add the bottle of Mountain Dew along with it. YOU DON’T NEED THE EXTRA CALORIES!
- Walk around the town. In fact, walk everywhere. It’s no easy task finding a parking spot at Tulip Time, so instead if you can, walk to wherever it is you need to go. Most people do a lot of walking during Tulip Time, but you’d be surprised at how much sitting you do as well. And if you are walking, pick a decent pace to walk at. You’re not a tourist. I’m guessing you don’t need to stroll through Central Park and look at the tulips. Research shows that people who walk faster live longer than people who walk slower. So that’s an added bonus. Not only will you get to the food stands faster, but you’ll live longer in the process.
- Follow the wagons around town. You know the wagons I’m talking about – the blue ones with all of the tourists. Try this sometime this week – get your running shoes on and follow the tour wagons around town on their route. It’ll be a great calorie burn and if you stay close enough you might learn some Pella history while you’re at it.
- Don’t watch the parades – walk them! If you’re not walking in the parades, then ditch your lawn chair and follow along as they go. There are 6 parades and they each travel about ¾ of a mile. After the 3 days you’ll have walked an extra 4.5 miles. And if you add in all of the dodging and weaving of tourists that you’ll have to do, you’ll be at 5 miles easily.
So there you have it – 5 strategies for you to stay fit during Tulip Time! If you try out some of these strategies you’ll definitely keep the weight off. If not, then I expect to see you at the gym on Monday!