Every year around this time, it’s the same thing: holiday parties, Christmas cookies in the break room, more holiday shopping or traveling than working out, and more holiday parties! The result is after New Years we end up feeling desperate to loose the holiday pounds we packed on from over indulging.
So here’s a few tips to help you avoid that dreaded holiday weight gain:
1) GET MOVING!
I know it seems obvious, but in the middle of the holiday season a lot of great intentions get pushed aside. It doesn’t matter what you like to do for exercise, just do something! Commit to yourself right now that you’ll do some for of physical activity EVERYDAY!
Get a personal trainer. Sometimes having someone to be accountable to keeps you on track. Knowing that unlike your workout videos collecting dust on the shelf, a fitness trainer is waiting on you to stay accountable to the commitment you made to yourself AND that person is a good motivator to stay on track!
Try that fitness class you’ve been wanting to try at your local gym! Classes provide a social aspect to fitness that is fun and rewarding. And you might meet a new friend!
Take a walk! Get up an hour earlier, or take a stroll after dinner. Doesn’t have to be a marathon. Get a buddy to walk with you, or take that time to catch up on a book on tape, or listen to some good music that motivates you to move, or just quiet time to help you collect your thoughts of the day!
Have bad knees or other joints? Don’t worry – water aerobics or swimming is your answer! The water prevents your weight bearing down on the joints and is an effective way to burn calories.
2) 7 a day!
Making sure you eat seven or more servings of fruits and vegetables each day is a great way to help fill-up your stomach but not your calorie level. When compared to other snack foods like chips, crackers and cookies, gram for gram, fruits and vegetables contain fewer calories and tons more nutrients. What’s more – the fiber in fruits and vegetables fill you up faster than traditional snack foods. Pack your refrigerator with bags of cut-up vegetables and whole or cut-up fruits. Grab a bag while on the go or at work. Make a pact with yourself that you’ll eat your five-a-day before you snack on any cookies or other holiday treats. You’re sure to take in fewer calories overall.
3) Avoid temptation!
So the break room at your work is filled with more than everyones fair share of goodies, candies, cookies and cakes…AVOID! If you can’t see it, it won’t tempt you! Remember, this time is temporary, but the results can be lasting! Stay out of that break room!
While you can’t control every situation, you can control how much food goes into your mouth. If you are constantly bombarded with holiday parties and displays of desserts or candies you can still effectively help prevent overeating and weight gain. Limit yourself to ONE per day! One treat per day is a good way to keep from over indulging. Remember that you may have to compensate for it later in the day by reducing your total caloric intake or by burning a few extra calories while exercising. If you aren’t confronted with holiday foods that day, just SKIP your one-a-day! But don’t compensate and double-up on your serving the next day.
4) NEVER go to a party hungry!
Have a piece of fruit or a small light salad and a large glass of water before you head out. This will keep you from pigging out on the pupus! Proper planning will help you ensure your positive results.
Use the small plate method. Stick to the small plate, fill half of your plate with salad and vegetables, one quarter with meat, and the final quarter with starch. Don’t go back for seconds!
Avoid too much alcohol. Stick with one or two servings at the most. Also restrict what type of alcohol you’re consuming. Stay away from sugary cocktails and egg-nogs. Limit yourself to one or two glasses of wine or light beer. Besides, you’re there to solicialize, not tie one on!
The holidays were meant to be enjoyed with friends and family! Remember to plan ahead and set goals and keep them! Feeling good about yourself is just another reason for holiday cheer! Aloha!