‘Tis the season of hustle and bustle! As we try to find the magic of the holidays, it’s easy to get distracted with last-minute “to-dos.” From end-of-the-year work deadlines to family visits, travel, shopping, and holiday parties, it’s easy to ditch your diet and give up on your health and wellness goals. We’ve put together hectic healthy holiday strategies to help you stay on track with your goals and help you manage the holiday stress.
Have a health food toolkit
It’s easy to think, “it’s okay if I overindulge–I’ll get back to a balanced diet once the holidays are over,” but this mindset quickly turns from just one cookie to three cookies. While we aren’t telling you to ditch the nostalgic holiday treats completely, there are ways to better manage your diet without guilt (or weight gain). Stick to the 80/20 rule: 80% of your choices are healthy, and 20% of your choices are fun or indulgent. Following 80/20 allows you to enjoy holiday food without food restrictions, which can lead to binging. Be sure to fill up on lean protein and vegetables, eat off a small plate for portion control, and continue to eat consistently throughout the day.
Avoid holiday party traps
Social engagements are an exciting way to celebrate the holidays with friends, family, or co-workers, but these get-togethers make it easy to fall into the trap of mindless eating, over-snacking, extra sweets, and too much alcohol. To avoid these traps, eat a light meal or snack before the party instead of showing up on an empty stomach. This will help control how much food you consume and ensures you are sticking to your diet. Don’t feel pressured to eat more snacks or drink more alcohol; feel comfortable saying “no,” stand away from the food table to not be tempted, keep busy in conversation, and switch off with water or club soda with lemon/lime in between alcoholic beverages.
Have fun with holiday-inspired workouts
Grab your friends or family and take a group fitness class, blast your favorite music and dance, go on a scenic winter walk, or make up your own holiday workout challenge. For example, you can assign exercise moves to specific words from a holiday song: when you hear the word “snowflake,” everyone has to do five push-ups. Whatever movement you choose, have fun with it! Staying active during the holiday season will help you reach your weight loss goals, release happy hormones to help you destress, and will keep you energized.
Make time and space for yourself
Don’t forget to practice self-care and find quiet time in all the craziness. Mental health plays an equal part in weight loss and overall health. Practice meditation, yoga, breathing techniques, take a hot bath, go for a massage, or start journaling to help you reflect, destress, and re-set. Remember, you don’t have to show up to every invite. It’s always okay to say “no.”
The holiday season doesn’t always have to stay hectic and unhealthy. Following these strategies will help you stay on track with your health goals while still enjoying holiday fun.
Beat the holiday weight gain and get ahead of your new year’s resolutions by reaching out to one of our weight loss clinics for a free consultation. With services that include weight loss pills, one-on-one counseling, and personalized diet plans, we will find what works for you!