With Christmas just around the corner and work and office Christmas parties in full swing, you may be starting to think that all your weight loss plans and healthy eating makeovers are going to go out the window.
And while it may indeed be a season filled with more indulgences than usual and heaps more chocolate and treats hanging around in the house, it doesn’t mean all your hard work has to be lost or all your plans have to be cast aside.
Instead, use some of these tips to help you stay on track and maintain your progress:
- Eat before you go – It sounds counter-intuitive given that you are going to an event with food, where you will be eating, but having something healthy before you go means you won’t be tempted to fill up on unhealthy food when you arrive. Eat some raw veggies or a piece of fruit and some nuts before you leave and don’t make the mistake of starving yourself all day, thinking you are going to be having a lot of calories in the evening and should save up. If you show up hungry and having deprived yourself of food all day, you are more likely to gorge and binge on whatever is in sight, and especially the sweets. Avoid this by eating normally and healthfully throughout the day and having a light snack before you head out.
- Offer to bring healthy food – If you are going to a potluck style holiday get together, offer to bring something healthy that you know you will be able to fill up on. This allows you to still be able to eat, but means you don’t have to fill up on unhealthy casseroles or sweets. Things like raw veggies and hummus, homemade spring rolls with a dipping sauce, or lettuce cups with salsa and guacamole are all great, potluck friendly options.
- Cap it off at one drink – Alcohol adds a lot of calories without you even knowing – one drink can contain over 200 calories, making it easy for you to rack them up quickly on a night out celebrating for the office work party. But nobody wants to be the person sitting there without a drink in hand. So instead, have one alcoholic drink and then start substituting with something that is lower in calories. You could do something like sparkling water with lime or homemade kombucha – fizzy without the extra calories, and the benefits of being fermented.
- Have a holiday cut off date – Just like you have a cut off date for when you would like to finish all your holiday shopping (a girl can dream!), you should have a cut off date for when you stop eating the holiday treats, chocolates etc. If you don’t, they will linger in the house into the New Year, and start sabotaging all your new year’s resolutions and weight loss plans. Enjoy the holiday food and festivities, but set a date for the end of December, (around the 27th or 28th) and agree to purge the leftovers, get them out of your house and fill the pantry with only good, healthy food that you an eat guilt free and not worry about. Stock up on healthier snacks like raw nuts, fruits and vegetables
- Bring a smaller plate – The tendency for the holidays is lots of food, big portions, and then lots of dessert and holiday chocolate to follow. Avoid the issue of oversized portions by using a smaller plate. When you head to Christmas dinner or to the holiday family gathering, bring your own smaller sized plate and fill it with food instead of the one on the table. You will still be able to fill it up, so you won’t have to deal with grandma telling you you aren’t eating enough, but you won’t feel like you are over indulging or overly stuffed after dinner. And above all else, simply eat until you are satisfied and stop before you are really full!
- Also check out 5 holiday fitness tips to help detox your life!