Are People Prone to Injuries Around the Holidays?

Beer and Water


Christmas is quickly approaching and soon the office holiday parties and social gatherings will commence. This usually involves lots of drinks, good food, desserts, and running additional errands to prep for out-of-town guests (I mean, have you seen Costco…).

With all of these holiday celebrations, it can be tempting to put aside some of the things you’ve been working towards for the past year. Your exercise routines and healthy eating habits can easily be swapped out for holiday parties and big celebratory dinners. Which is okay, I’m not here to tell you to stop, I’m no party pooper. It’s my favorite thing to do during the holidays! But too much fun could lead to injuries.

But there are a couple of things to think about before you find yourself at the office holiday party until 2 in the morning. Limiting the impact that a Christmas party will have on you can reduce the chances of injury and ultimately help you to continue achieving your goals straight into the new year.

While other people cave into the temptations this season has to offer, we have some information that can keep you on track with your goals into the new year.

If you’ve attended a holiday party in the past, then you’d know that the morning after can comprise soreness, dehydration, and lack of motivation. Often times my patients arrive to their appointments in January, asking me why they feel sore and unmotivated several days after their holiday party. I explain to them that dehydration plays a huge role in how they act and feel over the course of time following their celebration. Dehydration is extremely dangerous when it comes to injuries. In the days following the party, your body will be more prone to pulling muscles due to the fact that they will be more tight than usual. Especially if you plan to go for your morning run or workout routine.

I understand the feeling, I’ve been there! But there are small decisions we can make throughout the night that will help us to do the things we want to do the next morning. I hear people talk about this issue so often, that I thought this was the perfect time of year to provide some solutions that will allow you to enjoy your holiday celebrations while still fulfilling your goals.

To steer clear of the possibility of tearing a muscle so that you can continue being active, it’s important to stay on top of water consumption and add a few minutes to your warm-up (because of course you are warming up before you exercise). This will help you to avoid the dehydration that comes with drinking alcohol. If you do choose to have a few drinks at the office party, a solution I give to my patients is to drink a couple of glasses of water in between each alcoholic beverage. Having a large water bottle ready on your nightstand for when you get home will aid you in feeling better the next day, as well as drinking lots of water the following day.

A torn muscle isn’t the only thing that can arise in the days following the celebration. Lack of motivation drastically reduces your ability to continue doing the things you enjoy. Staying out later and not getting the fluids that your body needs can cause you to skip out on that early morning workout. But while everyone else is sleeping later and showing up late to or even missing their warm-up, you’ll wake up feeling prepared to go on that morning run or play around with your grandkids.

Nick Hunter, PT, DPT

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