Who says you have to finish the holiday five pounds heavier?
This year you can prevent a 5 pound holiday weight gain.
The festive season is a time to indulge, be spiritual and celebrate around rich food and drink. But as you know, the holiday period is also a stressful and busy period (and for some a difficult time).
For these reasons, it is not always easy to finish the year feeling ‘en grande forme’ (in great shape) without a few extra pounds.
But you can prevent a holiday weight gain.
Here are my 5 popular tips I use:
(and please let me know your weight control holiday secrets)!
1. Physical Activity
- I have some friends that may read this tip and feel a bit guilty that they have let their exercise habits slack off, (no guilt!). We are all victims of feeling the lack of time to get everything done.
- This tip, physical activity, is the main key to keep your weight in control over the holiday season. The month of December is the worst time of the year to cut back on exercise or give up those quick power walks. You might have re-adjust your schedule, but if you want to stay weight stable over the holiday, you’ll need to do as much or more physical activity than your usual amount.
- If you have to separate your hour workout to two half-hour workouts, or add a power walk on weekend, then do it. You will get that hour back by feeling better, more stress reduction, staying healthier and more focused/productive.
- Move on to Tip # 2 and plan your workouts ahead and schedule them into your weekly agenda.
2. Plan Ahead
- “What’s for dinner?” Nothing says “Take out!” like not having anything in the fridge to eat or just being too tired to cook. Plan ahead for the week coming up, including your food menus, grocery shopping lists, exercise and all the other holiday tasks that must (somehow) fit in with all the rest.
- By planning ahead on your dinners and workouts you will find yourself (and your family) eating healthier and lighter and just feeling better.
3. Party Strategy
- 3. My third tip is a party strategy. This one is simple: attend parties with your stomach half hungry, not with a “I have starved -all-day for this party” appetite. We can be discriminative eaters and choose healthier and lighter party food when our stomachs are not yelling at us to eat everything on the buffet table.
- Which brings me to tip #4
4. Portion Control
- This might be the hardest tip for some to follow, but using mindful slow eating, eating when you are hungry and not eating out of emotional stress (which the holidays are keen to provoke) will help you to practice small portion control.
- Strive for gourmet not gourmand. Don’t give in to the pressure of your family, (or your Italian nonna) to mangia mangia! At work, when your colleagues bring in those chocolates and cakes they want to share, you don’t have to say yes. If you are not hungry, don’t eat. If you are hungry, sit down and eat. Take a few minutes without distraction (no phone or Facebook) and just eat until you are full.
- Portion control on alcohol, including cocktails, wine and beer. Alcohol is full of empty calories and can add extra weight. Ideally, an apéritif is an ideal way to start off the celebration, but moving on thru the evening to binge drinking will add extra weight and leave you dehydrated. Best is to find the balance with food and alcohol in moderation with emphasis on staying hydrated. A friend uses this tip: slow sip one drink of alcohol then slow sip one drink of water, repeat.
- Portion control during the holidays is a key tip to keeping off the holiday extra weight.
5. Power Nap
- Power Nap or proper amounts of sleep (on average eight hours of restful sleep each night) helps with stopping holiday weight gain.
- Since many of us, including myself, are burning the candle on both ends during the busy holiday season, high chances that a power nap is something you can do in place of enough sleep. If possible, a daily 10 minute snooze after lunch (in the car at work-or sneak away in a quiet area) will do wonders for boosting your immune system and being able to handle the rest.
Reached the end and want to know more? Why not subscribe to BrightonYourHealth monthly newsletter and article updates by joining below. Your email will always remain private, and you can download a popular 13 page E-report entitled, “French Good Health Tips Without a Food Snob Attitude.” (A perfect list of health tips to start after the holidays).
Happy Holidays and Good Health to All,