It can be extremely hard to maintain a healthy lifestyle during the holidays. The cold weather means most physical activities are limited to the indoors, it’s a busy time of year so squeezing in a workout is more difficult than usual, and we’re surrounded by lots of tasty treats – at work, home, and parties. However there are ways to combat the holiday eating extravaganza and leave the sofa to get some exercise.
When dinner is on the table, stick to eating the ‘best-for-you’ offerings first. A soup entrée will fill you and help avoid eating too much during the main course. Eat slowly; it takes 15 to 20 minutes for your stomach to tell your brain it is full. At the end of the meal, if you still have room, opt for a fruit based dessert over something packed with artificial sugars.
If it’s a potluck occasion, make sure you take a healthy dish with you.
It may sound silly, but stand more than an arm length away from the sweet treats that mom or gran have inevitably put out. You can admire them from afar and avoid slipping one into your mouth ever few minutes.
If you’re heading to the grocery store to purchase the turkey, trimmings, and treats make sure you don’t go there hungry. Eat something before you shop for gifts too so you don’t find yourself munching on junk food at the mall food court.
For so many of us, we dread getting into our favorite jeans when January comes round. If you want to avoid squeezing into your ‘skinny’ jeans then put them on every other day to ensure you’re not overdoing it on the Christmas cookies.
For anyone that likes to indulge in the odd tipple, watch the liquid calories. Try to avoid anything that is mixed with soda due to the high sugar content. Drink wine or mix a tonic water or club soda with your drink.
If you don’t have time for an hour workout break it up and go for short walks during the day. After lunch or dinner, if it’s not too cold, take a stroll with the family, play ball, or stay inside and play games with the kids – they’ll have plenty of energy to keep you on your toes. Don’t forget the calories you’ll be burning running around, cleaning, and organizing for the big day too.
If you are going to indulge choose foods or drinks that you wouldn’t ordinarily have that way you’ll not feel you’ve done yourself a disfavor.