Holidays are here…can you believe Thanksgiving is next week? I’m excited to go out with friends for “Thanksgiving Eve” and then eat my favorite foods on Thanksgiving! I said I would do my Christmas shopping earlier this year but it hasn’t happened yet. Not sure if I’ll partake in Black Friday this year.
Anyway, the holiday season can mean lots of food…unhealthy food. People prepare themselves to gain weight and then plan on losing it in the new year. I know a lot of people who are okay with gaining weight and not working out as much during the holidays because “it’s the holidays.” What?? Why??
“Holiday season” is usually two main holidays – Thanksgiving and Christmas. That is only 2 days. Why do we span it out over almost two months? Why is it okay to eat whatever you want for 2 months?
Trust me, I’ve been guilty of this too. I’m used to say, eh whatever I’ll just start back up after New Years. But if you don’t want to gain weight and don’t want to start over on Jan. 1, then don’t let the “holidays” take over. Here are a few tips:
Don’t go nuts for 2 months. I know people have office parties, and then you have your own parties, and then you have your friends’ parties. But really try to be mindful of what you’re eating. Choose the events where you really want to savor the food and company. For me that would be Thanksgiving and Christmas with my family. I’m actually going to “Thanksgiving dinner” with my sister tonight at her school, but plan on keeping portions small and loading up more on veggies than on stuffing. Don’t be complacent with eating whatever during the months of November and December.
Exercise. An obvious one right? If you do splurge, don’t make yourself feel guilty. It happens, and you don’t want to deprive yourself either during this time. But just make sure you counteract it with exercise. Stay active this winter. Try to go to the gym every day or every other day if possible and do whatever you love that makes you sweat. Going to the gym more often may actually help deter you from bad food choices too, because who wants to undo all that hard work??!
Sign up for a holiday race. This kind of goes with the above point, but find a Turkey Trot or a Santa Race and run with friends and family. Sure it’s cold, but it’s a great way to stay active and get others involved. Plus, running a 5K the morning of Thanksgiving means an extra serving of mashed potatoes right?
Don’t wait until the new year. Why wait?? You can start now. Why do we always wait until Monday or “the new year” for a fresh start? What are your goals? Start working towards them now. By waiting until January you’re wasting a whole month you could be working on something! You’ll be ahead of the game once Jan. 1 comes around. If you do end up wanting to wait, then at least start writing down your goals now. Make a concrete plan of how you’re going to achieve those goals, so you’re not one of the high percentage of resolutioners who fall off around February or March.
Remember, the “holidays” are not every day from now until January. Use those days that are not a holiday to stay on track and you won’t gain weight this winter. I know it can be hard and tempting, but really think about what’s more important: staying healthy or indulging in food. And hey, if indulging is more important than go for it! But as I always say to my mom when I give her tough love, “don’t complain later on.”
What tips would you add?
What’s your favorite holiday gathering and food?
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