While the holidays are prefect for celebrating, they aren’t exactly ideal for weight loss.
Tables are filled with delicious appetizers, decadent desserts, and ice-cold alcoholic beverages… all of which require superhuman willpower to resist.
But if you plan to slip into a bikini come spring break…
Or hope to take the beach getaway once the weather gets unbearably cold…
Then these top 10 tips and tricks will help you pack on the fun, but NOT the pounds this holiday season.
1. DON’T STARVE YOURSELF
Many women attempt to “save” calories by skipping meals throughout the day in order enjoy one enormous feast. The problem with this approach is that your body can’t digest that much food at once. When you eat a large meal excess nutrients are stored as unwanted fat. Instead, try eating a light breakfast and lunch to avoid feeling starved by the time dinner is served.
2. WEAR JEANS TO DINNER
Sounds silly right? But huge clothing can actually promote overindulgence. I know I’m a lot less likely to keep eating if it means I’ll have to walk around with my top button undone. While grandma may not approve of a crop top or mini skirt, jeans and a form fitting long sleeve shirt are great choices for family dinners.
3. DON’T OVERLOAD YOUR PLATE
Although you may be talented enough to fit the entire kitchen on your plate, I wouldn’t recommend it. It can be very hard to decide what to eat when there are tons of delicious options in front of you. Remember, you DON’T need to eat everything, but you can try a lot of things. Start with only a few bites of each option, as opposed to huge servings. You can always go back for seconds if you really want them.
4. WATCH HOW MUCH YOU POUR
It’s easy to underestimate how much you’ve had to drink, especially when you’re pouring wine by the glass. While a normal serving of wine is five ounces, differences in glass shape, size, and color can make it difficult to measure. If you like to enjoy a glass of wine every night, then make sure an averaged size bottle of wine lasts you five nights.
5. EAT TURKEY OVER HAM
As opposed to ham, which is high in sodium and fat, choose a few slices of turkey breast for dinner. Avoid the skin and thighs because these contain hundreds of unwanted calories. They also have been drowned in salt and butter, neither of which will make you feel good about yourself the next day.
6. DON’T ASSUME VEGETABLES ARE HEALTHY
Candied beets, cream of spinach, broccoli and cheese… bring on the yoga pants? While all of these side dishes were once healthy vegetables, they have been transformed into caloric bombs. If it’s something you’re really craving, then opt for a smaller portion as opposed to a mountain piled high on your plate.
7. ENJOY YOUR FAVORITE DISH
Is someone making your favorite homemade mac-and-cheese or apple pie? If so, it’s perfectly okay to treat yourself to a few bites (or even a few more than a few bites). As long as you don’t bring home the entire container of leftovers, you shouldn’t miss out on this yearly opportunity.
8. SIT AWAY FROM THE SNACK BOWL
It’s easy to get caught up in mindless munching while watching football games. If you’re someone with a food-focused mindset, opt for a seat furthest away from the snack bowl and keep a bottle of water handy. It may also be helpful to chew gum between meals, as your minty fresh breath should deter you from eating.
9. SHOP OFF EXTRA CALORIES
Awesome sales and shopping mall chaos – sounds like a great form of cardio to me! Wear your sneakers, park far away, and outrun the lady darting for the last pair of boots at Nordstrom. You’ll be ready to enjoy leftovers by the time you’re done this workout!
10. DON’T FEEL GUILTY FOR CELEBRATING
Even though you’re well equipped to fight off temptation and stay on track this holiday season, there’s still a chance you may succumb to freshly baked dinner rolls or homemade apple pie. Honestly, who cares! You are human, which means you aren’t perfect. Claiming to be a failure at life or calling yourself fat will NOT get you any closer to your goals.
It’s one day and unless you managed to eat an extra 3500 calories, then you didn’t even gain a pound from all your overindulgence. Just make sure one splurge doesn’t turn into several days of unhealthy eating. Enjoy the holiday, treat yourself, and then get back on track!