By Stephanie Trevino, MBA, PHR
Anyone that works in fitness will tell you that the last two months of the year are slow months for us. Couple holidays with family gatherings and extra expenses this is the time most people let excuses consume them.
I cannot eat healthy with all these parties, or I need to save money to pay for gifts for people I barely know. Whatever the reason do not allow excuses to consume you and ruin your healthy habits.
Don’t get me wrong—I believe that holidays are special occasions, times to eat and be merry. Choose wisely and do not allow yourself to go crazy and gain the dreaded 10 to 15 pounds, most do during the holidays.
Be smart. Choose wisely. Do not allow one holiday meal or event through your whole day off. Pick the most important events to indulge and really focus on what you are eating and do not eat just to eat.
Tips and Tricks for Holiday Eating
- Stay focused during the day. We make the mistake of not eating all day to allow “room” for a big meal. This is a mistake! When you are hungry your body will crave all sorts of foods you would not normally eat. Stop. Think about what you are eating. Eat a well balanced breakfast and lunch before you go to the event.
- Ensure that the next meal you eat after a cheat is a healthy one. When we eat something that is out of the norm for us we usually feel guilty afterward. The guilt leads us to seek out more “bad” food, which in turn leads to more guilt and so on, with the cycle continuing for days, weeks or even months. After indulging in a special treat, immediately get back to your regular eating plan. The hardest healthy meal is the one right after a cheat meal.
- Plan before you attend. Find out what kind of food will be at the event you are attending. Plan around the menu and load up on vegetables and lean protein options. Try to limit high-fat and fried foods so you keep the overall calories under control.
- Leave the table. When you are finished eating, walk away. Spend time socializing and enjoying the company of friends and family. If you stay close to the food you will keep on eating.
Holidays are times to be spent in the company of loved ones. But the urge to also indulge in food is at an all-time high. By planning ahead and staying focused, you will be able to maintain your fitness during this challenging time. Snack and eat wisely, choose small portions so you can try a bit of everything, eat slowly, and stop when you are full.
Go out and celebrate. Enjoy the people you love. Remember, ‘Tis the Season of more than just food.
If you have questions about this topic or anything related to health and fitness, drop me a line at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Stephanie Tapia, MBA, PHR is a certified nutritionist and life coach. She is the founder and owner of Strength of Body and Mind, a full service consultancy dedicated to strengthening the body and mind through coaching in all aspects of life including professional development, physical and mental health and wellness. Her areas of expertise include physical fitness, nutrition, and mental and physical wellness. More information is available at www.strengthbodymind.com and on Facebook.com/StrengthBodyMind.