Prepare for Battle, the Holidays Approach!

Knights Battling
Photo by Sister72 via Flickr

Halloween was just the harbinger of things to come. It brought candy and temptation, attempting to open a crack in your resolve that the following holidays could exploit. Hopefully, you were able to fight the temptation of Halloween, avoided having more than two or three sweets and emerged with your healthy diet intact.

Many people tell me that from Halloween through the end of the year is when they will have an almost impossible time avoiding unhealthy foods and overeating. They also tell me that they won’t have time to workout during the holiday season. As a result, they gain weight or let their diets fail during the holidays, but that doesn’t have to be the case, even while enjoying the holiday season. You just need to make your health a priority and make smart choices.

You can be healthy this holiday season
I understand that the holidays bring on extra food and sweets. Coworkers start filling the break room with more goodies than normal.  Neighbors come by with cookies and cakes. Plus, all the big dinners, such as Thanksgiving and Christmas can be overwhelming. During this time of year, food is tempting you non-stop. And we all know that eating all those cakes, cookies, candies and large portions can derail your weight loss or weight maintenance goal. So, here are a few tips that you should remember this holiday season to keep you on track for your weight loss goal, if you have one, or at least not gain a few extra pounds.

  1. Remember to exercise: It’s especially important to workout during the holidays. You need to counteract any extra food you take in if your resolve slips. While shopping for gifts and preparing for and enjoying the festivities is important, you must continue to allocate some time to exercise. Build it into your schedule, so that it doesn’t get forgotten.
  2. Watch your portions: Please don’t try a little of everything on the Thanksgiving table. That’s way too much food. I’ve tried it. I know. That will not help you be healthy.  I’m not saying to not enjoy Thanksgiving or Christmas dinner, but watch your portions and eat slowly. If you eat too fast, you’ll overeat because you won’t feel full until after you’ve eaten too much. We all want dessert, so leave some space for it, rather than trying to cram it in on a full stomach.
  3. Advocate healthier treats: Try to convince your coworkers to bring healthier versions of favorite treats rather than the less healthy ones. One example might be a pumpkin pie with a graham cracker crust instead of a Crisco laden one.
  4. Have alternative snacks: Bring a healthy snack to work so that you won’t be tempted by the goodies. Having something tasty as an alternative to the sweets, makes it easier to turn them down.
  5. Just say no: Say no to food pushers. No matter how hard they try, say no thank you and politely walk away. Don’t say why you’re refusing. If you say you’re trying to be healthy or watch your weight, they’ll take it as a request for an excuse to allow you to cheat. Don’t believe me? Try it and you’ll see.
  6. Exercise before or after a big meal: If you are going to eat a big meal, exercise beforehand or go for a walk afterward to burn off some of the extra calories. It doesn’t have to be a chore, you could take the family for a walk around the block and look at all the house decorations and lights. It can be a fun thing to do! Of course, if it’s -10F (-23.3 C)  where you live, you’ll have to come up with an alternative plan. I live in California, what can I say? It doesn’t get as cold where I’m at.

So, exercise and eat reasonably and you will emerge victorious! Don’t set back your weight loss or upset the healthy weight you’ve already achieved. Enjoy the holidays by beating back the weight gain and emerging a healthy you, ready to start the new year right. Not only will you be healthier, but it’ll also give you a healthier outlook on the new year ahead. If you can lose weight during the holidays, you know that you can achieve any goal you set for yourself, so go out and prove that you can.

Comments (3)

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  1. Mark Salinas says:

    I do believe that most people find now through the end of the year more challenging in the eating dept.
    A good read with excellent pointers. Thanks!

  2. Rosy says:

    Excellent post and reminders for all, Talli!!! I do try to save calories for the holidays and exercise alittle more.

  3. Great tips Talli!

    I also see a lot of alcohol consumed during this time of year. I don’t drink so I save on calories there but for those who do, they should remember that there’s even less effort involved in consuming those calories not to mention their poor overworked livers and kidneys!

    As you said, watch your portions sizes & everything in moderation, including drinks is a great way to go!

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