We chat to clinical nutritionist Jess Sepel on how to stay on track this FebFast – are you up for the challenge?

The festive season is over, the January hangover has slowly subsided and it’s time to rekindle the healthy routine you’ve been avoiding so far in 2016.

Lacking motivation? The annual Febfast event encourages a month-long pause from alcohol and sugar, while raising money for underprivileged youth. Enter as a team or go it alone; just use it as an opportunity to give your body a break from the vino and the sweets for a good cause.

We spoke to clinical nutritionist and all-round health guru Jess Sepel to get her tips and tricks on how to stay on track for the challenge.

Stay hydrated

Make sure you’re drinking your two litres of water every day. If this isn’t exciting enough for you, swap to a few glasses of sparkling water with fresh lemon or lime, or freeze your favourite fruits into ice cubes and pop them in your drink. Not only is this refreshing on a hot day, but the fruit infuses as the ice melts for the sweetener taste (minus the calories).

Eat your protein

Protein keeps you fuller for longer, and it doesn’t necessarily have to come in the form of red meat, chicken or eggs. Potatoes, chia seeds, green peas and rice are examples of foods also high in protein.

Snack pre-party

Have a satiating snack before you head out to a celebratory event so that you don’t find yourself starving and turning to foods you wouldn’t normally eat. My favourite snack options before heading out are hummus and vegie sticks, coconut yoghurt or Greek yoghurt topped with berries and sugar-free granola, or chopped apple with almond butter.

Be balanced

If you do indulge, don’t feel it has to be an ‘all or nothing’ affair. Let yourself enjoy a few treats occasionally and remember that your body can handle unhealthy foods in small amounts. Trust yourself.

Get active

Use Febfast as an opportunity to wake up early on the weekend and go for a run, practice yoga outside as the sun rises or even just take the dog for a stroll around the block. Physical activity in the morning before you start your day will kick start your endorphins and leave you feeling awake and energised.

Prioritise your health

Prioritise your physical and mental wellbeing by making a conscious decision to balance your fun – enjoy activities that aren’t centred on drinking or alcohol. Go to brunch with your besties, take a walk along the coast with your family or have a booze-free picnic.

Register and find out more today.

NEXT: Find out how alcohol affects you.