And now, let the true temptations begin. Thanksgiving is one thing, you have a day where you indulge and allow yourself to dive into those mashed potatoes and gravy so hard that you go into a food coma for hours on end. Christmas is another thing. It isn't just one day you indulge, but we love to turn it into a "holiday season indulgence," lasting from before Christmas Eve, until we return to school or work. If there isn't a day you're not surrounded by sugar cookies, brownies, candy canes, eggnog, etc., you're not doing the holidays right. However, just because you're surrounded by these temptations, doesn't mean you have to let the santa cookies win the battle. It is possible to indulge in your favorites, but not let it sabotage your healthy lifestyle.
Let me share with you my simple tips that get me through the holidays:
1) Save your calories for only the special holiday treats- How many times a year are you offered cute little gingerbread men or your Grandma's homemade cheesecake? Probably only once a year, so choose those deserts to indulge in instead of store-bought cookies with icing you can get any other day of the year.
2) Focus on fun, not food- Yes, they typically go hand-in-hand, but I've been guilty of letting food distract me from having fun with family I only see once or twice a year. I'm going to make a goal to focus more on immersing myself into old and new traditions that don't have to revolve around food.
3) Plan ahead- One of the lessons that have had the biggest impact on my healthy journey is planning ahead. I used to throw myself into the holidays "hoping for the best" and trying to not binge and ruin everything. Now, I'm patient with myself. I allow myself to indulge because I know I'm going to anyways. Don't restrict yourself all day- be honest with yourself.
4) Stay Active- Whether this is a habit of yours or a new goal, staying active is extremely important during the holidays. However, don't workout because you want to "burn off those 5 bites of cheesecake," workout to feel good about yourself and have a clear mind throughout the holidays. Releasing those endorphines can just do the trick in successfully killing it during the holidays.
5) Eat your Veggies- Not only do they offer a countless amount vitamins and minerals, they offer the most important nutrient around the holidays, fiber. Fiber from raw vegetables will keep you full and allow you to only eat until you're full. Offer to bring a veggie tray to the holiday parties and eat a small plate before the meal.
6) Stay away from the "stretchy pants"- Ah, the ones who are always there for you when you've eaten more than your stomach can handle. We all love them; however, these pants are practically an invitation to overeat. Leave the roomy pants behind and opt for skinny jeans, slim-fit suit, or a tight dress to resist going back for thirds. **Bonus- you'll look hot while doing it!
7) Water, Water, and some more Water- Hydration is key friends! Just like veggies, water keeps you full so you don't eat more than your body can handle. It also flushes out the toxins and keeps you feelin' your best! How much should you drink? Half of your body weight in ounces is what they say. So if you weigh 140 lbs, drink 70 ounces of water each day.
8) Try the "fork trick"- One thing I struggle with when it comes to holiday eating is knowing how much food I'm eating, and when to stop. To help gauge how much you're consuming, try this trick: Once you take a bite of food, place your fork down on the plate, and let go of the fork. Chew your food, swallow, and then pick up your fork again. The key to this trick is actually letting go of the fork. This will remind you to slow down, enjoy your food, and converse with friends and family.
9) Sweat it out on New Year's Day- This is a very valuable lesson I learned from my Grandpa. One who always put health first, he taught me that starting your New Year's with a killer workout will set the tone for the rest of the year. And I'm sure you'll need to sweat out all those alcoholic beverages you consumed the night before ;)
These are tips that I use to get me through the holiday season without feeling bloated when I get back to school and I hope they can help you out too! Don't forget to subscribe below and follow me on Instagram @fitnotskinnny (3 n's) to keep up during the holidays! Don't forget to have a FIT, not skinny holiday :)