The Holidays are the best time of the year. There are so many wonderful things that accompany the holidays and the main thing is the food. It can be really easy to get caught up in the holiday spirit and get swept up in the mass amounts of food. How many of us have stuffed our faces on Thanksgiving until we felt like we could literally burst open? GUILTY. But when you've been working hard all year toward your fitness goals, the last thing you want to do is ruin all your progress in the 2 months of the Holiday Season.
I am not saying that you can't splurge a little and enjoy yourself and some delicious treats. I am simply trying to say that it is possible to do that without completely derailing your progress. Here are 10 tips to help keep you on track during the holidays and have a successful, delicious Thanksgiving.
1. Don't go into the meal starving: COMMON MISTAKE! But eat like you would every other day and you are less likely to overeat.
2. Bring your own Health Option: Whether it is a dessert, salad, veggie tray, or fruit platter, you will feel much better if you eat something healthy along with all of the junk.
3. Don't drink your calories: Egg Nog, Cocoa, Alcohol, Sparkling Cider, you name it. These drinks ADD UP FAST and before you know it you have had as many calories from drinks as you have from the meal itself.
4. Eat normally the rest of the week: Leftovers are inevitable. But that doesn't mean you need to eat a Thanksgiving sized meal every day for the next week. Be smart about your leftovers.
5. Don't completely restrict yourself: It is a holiday and a happy time. Don't make yourself miserable by restricting yourself to lettuce and carrots while your family eats potatoes and stuffing. Be choosy and "splurge" on your favorites, and leave out the things that you don't care as much for.
6. Reduce portion size, so you can try everything: This is a simple way to keep the calories low. Try a bit of everything if thats what you want. Just keep the sizes small and reasonable and you wont feel so stuffed.
7. Get your family members active: Participate in a turkey bowl, go for a family walk or run, hit the gym post meal. Whatever sounds fun. Our family likes to play basketball together before we have pie. Just get up and get active.
8. Eat slowly and wait for seconds: Often people go for seconds for the "good stuff" when they're not even hungry anymore. Eat slow, enjoy the meal, and visit with your family. And if you feel that you do want seconds, wait 10-15 minutes first, and if you are still hungry after that time then go for seconds, but if not then skip out. This is a great way to avoid over-indulging.
9. Limit extras: Gravy, Dressings, toppings, etc. can add a lot of extra calories into your meal. It's fine to have them, just be aware of how much you are adding and don't totally drown the potatoes in gravy.
10. Remember your hard work and stay true to your goals! Think sensibly and smart, and recognize that just because it is holiday time, doesn't mean you HAVE to have the pie or cookies if you're already full. Think of your progress and your goals and you are more likely to make good decisions.
Can you think of any other good tips to help control your holiday meals? Let me know, and I hope you all have a wonderful Thanksgiving!!