Holiday parties for four weeks in a row, nightly rum and eggnogs, and sweet treats everywhere you look, tis the season of gaining weight!
Not this year, you tell yourself year after year. But then December begins and you start the month without a plan and finish the month up 10 pounds.
Enter the weight gain season with a plan this year!
Some ideas to include in your plan:
GRAB A PLATE!
It’s easy to show up to a holiday party, where high-calorie hors d’eouvres are running rampant. It doesn’t seem like you’re eating much because they’re all basically bite-sized, but before you know it you have thrown 25 small napkins once containing a delicious 200-calorie bite into the garbage.
Solution: Grab a plate! Fill it once. Note your full plate and how much is on it. Eat it and be done with it.
DISTANCE YOURSELF FROM THE FOOD
Ever been somewhere where the chip bowl was within arms length? One minute you’re eating a handful of chips, and the next you’re staring at an empty bowl.
Solution: Strike up your conversations on the other side of the room from the food.
You’re less likely to trek across the room for another sausage roll or bacon-wrapped whatever than you are to casually stretch out your arm and pluck another spring roll off the table.
FAST IN THE AM
Use December as a time to experiment with intermittent fasting.
Shocking piece of advice of the day: Skip breakfast (There’s evidence, as we wrote about a while ago that skipping breakfast isn’t the bad idea we always thought it was (link to October #5 blog).
DON’T LISTEN TO THE EAT BEFORE YOU GO LOBBYISTS
I have often heard people give the advice to eat a small meal before you go to a Christmas party, so you don’t show up hungry and devour everything in sight.
From my experience, this rarely works. You’re GOING to eat at the Christmas party, hungry or not. There’s no such thing as a warm-up meal or a warm-up drink. Well there is: It’s called pre-drinking, and it doesn’t help you stay sober later.
Solution: Do NOT eat before you go.
KEEP YOUR GYM ROUTINE
Whatever you do, do not stop coming to the gym in December. It’s easy to use this time to be lazy, but keeping your fitness routine going in December is more crucial than ever. If you’re too busy after work, consider trying some early morning sessions before work.
January you will thank you for it big time.
MAKE YOUR OWN FOOD
If you’re hosting a party or event, take the time to make your own food for your guests, so you know exactly what’s in them. There are plenty of ways to cook memorable food that is also healthier than the usual holiday stuff.
Also, stay away from buying pre-made appetizers from the freezer section: Have you SEEN what’s in them?? Nothing good.
BE EXTRA STRICT
On the other hand, the holidays are meant to be enjoyed, and there’s nothing wrong with eating your favorite Christmas cookies with a glass of rum and eggnog here and there. Just make sure your diet is on point the rest of the time. If you’re more strict with your other meals than usual, then you’ll be more likely to appreciate and enjoy—and not see negative effects—from your inevitable cheat moments. It’s all about trade-offs.
Stay strong, folks! You’ll get through it.