Breathe. Most of us overthink the holidays in general. The more you stress about gaining weight this holiday season, the more you probably will. Stress plays a huge role in extra weight gain. I am a huge believer in what you think to be true will become true. So if you take the time everyday to tell yourself you will be okay and you CAN still indulge a little while staying on track, you will be just fine. Overall mindfulness is going to play a huge role in determining your success through the holidays and forever. Mind over matter.
Stick to your routine as much as you can. Take things day by day. Just because you have a big dinner planned with family doesn’t mean the whole day goes to waste. Small efforts still matter. Drink lots of water, try to exercise (move), get enough sleep etc. Consistency is key. Ditch the all or nothing mentality. Even just going for a 30 min walk STILL makes a difference, use your time wisely!
Nothing is off limits. The more you go into things with a restrictive mindset, the more likely you are to go the opposite direction and binge. Allow yourself to have a little bit of everything you are craving and let that be it. Now, I don’t mean have everything you want in giant quantities, keep what your stomach can handle in mind. Don’t fill your plate with your eyes, fill it with your goals. Take the time to really listen to your hunger and satiety cues and understand that if something is REALLY good, take some home for the next day and just account for it then.
Don’t starve yourself. Eat normal meals throughout the day with lots of veggies and protein, this will provide you nutrients and help keep you satisfied. You’ll also probably be feeling pretty good by doing this and therefore less likely to ruin that feeling by overindulging!
Fizzy flavored water instead of soda, alcohol etc. Soda and alcohol are probably the easiest ways to rack up calories. I am by NO means saying avoid it entirely, just be mindful that standard alcoholic beverages average anywhere from 100 (for light beers) – 500 calories per drink. Some beers have up to 300 calories. And wine is typically 120 calories for a 5oz glass. (5oz isn’t very much- about a 1/2 cup). If you do choose to drink, be sure to stay hydrated, this will help you process the alcohol more efficiently and feel better the next day : )
Uh did we forget what the holidays are all about? BE PRESENT. It’s really not about stuffing your face even though this is America. Take the time to engage with your family or friends you are spending the holidays with. Not everything you do has to involve food. Play card games (there are a lot of fun ones out there these days), go for a walk even. I know it’s hard because food will literally be all around you. Take a step back, realize that the food isn’t going anywhere, you can always make food present. Your family and friends won’t always be present.
It’s ok to say no. Don’t feel obligated to have something just because others are or are forcing it on you. People will give you a hard time as a result of their own insecurities or lack of adherence to a healthy life. You shouldn’t feel guilty about caring for your health. For example, I personally don’t enjoy cake or pie (I’m more of a brownie, cookie, ice cream kinda gal). For YEARS I would just eat it at gatherings because everyone else was and I’d feel guilty not participating. If it’s not going to do you well mentally OR physically, why bother! It’s okay to say no. Even if you DO enjoy something but you’re just too stuffed. Don’t overdo it just to please someone, it’s not worth doing that to your body. It’s better to waste something in the trash can than in your body.
Don’t overexercise to compensate for the calories. Please don’t fall for the ‘1 slice of pie = 500 burpees’ or ‘1 serving of stuffing = 3 mile run’. Don’t make exercise a punishment for being a human and enjoying an indulgent meal. Just get back to your normal routine as soon as you can and move on with your life.
I hope you all have an incredible Holiday Season with your friends and family. Keep in mind that fitness is just a part of your life that’s meant to enhance it, not control it. Remember what’s important.
As always, [email protected] if you need and further guidance.
All my best,