Conquer this holiday season with these 5 simple tips to keep you and your waistline on point.
Holiday parties, family gatherings, oh what fun it is. 'Tis the season to spread cheer, happiness, indulge and totally forget your goals. This time of year is so easy to fall off track and many of us get that oh fuck it let's get cray mindset once we slip up or feel like we are being deprived. There is no doubt that the celebrations that lead up to Christmas and New Year’s lead to weight gain. So what is a girl to do? Not partake in the festivities? Be totally anti-social and skip all parties? No, This is what NOT to do this season! I am going to help you out with a few effective ways to stay on track this season. What you are going to get this christmas season is peace of mind, flexibility and not fat!
- MOVE MORE
I am not saying go crazy and crank it the fuck up, exercise is not a punishment for your frequent bad choices. I’m simply saying get up and get going, go do something active more often. Some examples of this could be parking very far from the store and walking a bit extra, taking the stairs, curling your grocery bags like a G, walking your dogs a bit longer than usual. I know its hard to stay motivated at this time of year but changing things up a bit can help you stay motivated. At the gym, you can hit the weight room (yes i said it, go lift some shit, you will NOT get bulky, promise!) before the cardio machines. Try to add in an extra workout day during the week.
Change up your workout time as well. Instead of working out at night, do an early morning workout. You may find working out in the morning might give you an increase in energy and alertness during the day. Working out in the morning can help keep you on track at the office by making you more inclined to say “No thank you” to the goodies lying around. Make it more challenging and try something totally different, more intense and a calorie torcher for a workout. A challenging but great switch up would be a boxing class; try a Box Work class at Work Train Fight! One last move more tip, go for a walk on your lunch break, get off your butt! This saved me when I used to work for corporate years ago. Every lunch hour I’d eat lunch and then I’d go for a 45 minute walk.
The worst thing you can do when you know you’re going out for your holiday party is not eat all day. This leads to poor choices and binging once the evening comes around. Skipping meals is setting yourself up for failure! Start each day off with a hearty breakfast, preferably something high in protein and a moderate amount of complex carbohydrates like oats or whole grain toast. Make sure you pack at least one healthy protein packed snack and choose a lighter lunch. When you're at your party, you won’t be pigging out and grabbing everything you see because you have fed your body efficiently throughout the day.
Cut out your sugary teas, sodas, “flavored waters” and save calories by upping your intake of good ol’ H2O! Drink lots of water! We mistake thirst for hunger much of the time, so make sure you have a bottle of water with you all day. When it comes to party time, seltzer water in my opinion, is a great liquid to pass off as something else if you don’t want to get buzzed and not feel like an outcast. At your social events carry a glass of seltzer with ice, throw a lime in it, call it vodka and soda. Sip it like it’s something strong AF, You’ll look badass too. No one will ever know. I'm not saying don't drink at all, but try to keep a limit, Alcohol always seems to be a weak point for most. Alcohol isn't metabolized like food and still does have calories. The purpose of christmas parties isn't to get shit faced, keep your drinks to a minimum.
This is the most important factor here. This is how you will stay on track, keep from binging and not feel deprived. Enjoy yourself at your events, eat and drink in moderation! Let’s say you have been good all week with your nutrition and workouts, you have earned yourself some wiggle room in your diet to enjoy your favorite goodies at these parties. Go ahead and have PIECE of cake (not the whole cake)! Have A drink (or two) not five. If you’re at a dinner soiree, such as a buffet you have two options to keep you on point.
- Take a small plate (usually it’s the salad plate). As you go around the buffet, pick protein sources first , also choose anything with vegetables. You can create a salad if you’d like; avoid cheeses (and croutons) as a topping with your salad, save the fat ( and carb) calories for something else. If you’re still hungry after this plate, by all means go back up with another smaller plate and pick whatever else you want. Using small plates will help keep your portion sizes decent while not overdoing it. Choosing protein rich items and veggies first will help keep you from eating larger amounts of other things, like pasta and all that other good shit.
- Choose one large plate. Go around once, do not pass go. Pick whatever you want and get your ass back to your table. However, Make sure your options include protein and veggies as well, too often we pile our plates with the high carbohydrate items, little protein and veggies.
Don’t forget there is always dessert, so you may not want to go ham during dinner if you’re a cookie monster. Dessert is my favorite, and I always make sure my main courses are not too crazy so I can have my cake and eat it too! My rule of thumb for dessert, pick only two items, use the smallest plate they have available.
The last tip is probably the most complicated on this list. Willpower is just as much a muscle as your quad, You have to train it to become stronger. Being in social settings is a great way to exercise your willpower. It is OK to say no to anything! Do you really want it? Were you thinking about the eggnog before your arrived to the party, no? Then don't do it. You may just want to indulge because you see everyone else is munching and tossing back shots. Don't be like everyone else, not everyone else has your goals. Always ask yourself before you decide to deviate away from your plan, Do you really need it or want it? If you are around your "trigger" foods, is it worth destroying your days caloric intake on it? We all know our trigger foods, one bite is not enough. So exercise your willpower, its ok to say no to yourself and others.
These tips will help keep you on track this holiday season without feeling deprived. There really is nothing worse than feeling like you “can’t” have anything because you’re on a “diet”. That is not fun especially during the holidays. This type of thinking is what gives us the idea to just say fuck it, blow your diet, and beat yourself up the next day. My goal is to make sure you aren’t giving yourself the guilt trip, have fun during your fitness journey, and be social while maintaining your goals!