So tis the season of 5lb weight gain. Stop it with the 7 trick to holiday feasts.
1) Be A Boy Scout
I have never been a boy scout – the outfit would make me look ridiculous anyway. So I really don’t know much about them other than their awesome motto: Always be prepared. This is something I take to heart year round, but it becomes even more important during the holidays. Do everything in your power to know where you are going, what time you are going to be there, what time will you leave and (most importantly in this case) what food will be there. This is often easier said than done, but that is why we ALWAYS must be prepared. Have a plan and even a backup plan in place (use the tips in this guide for instance). When you have a plan (or backup plan) at the ready you are less likely to say “screw it” and chow down on Grandma’s holiday cobbler with an egg nog chaser.
2) Pound Down Protein First Did you know that the word “protein” comes from the ancient Greek word meaning “of first importance”? Well it does. And those Greeks were on to something. Protein has many benefits but in this holiday context it can save us from excess holiday fat gain. Turkey is always a perfect choice. Protein will blunt your appetite (naturally filling for long periods of time), make you use carbs more efficiently (less likely to store them as fat) and does not set the body’s hormonal system up for fat storage (quite the opposite actually). So hit the protein first to avoid other potential festive blubber bombs.
3) Don’t Drink Your Calories
Liquid calories add up fast. REAL FAST. Before you know it you have unknowingly consumed hundreds upon hundreds of calories from pure sugar (unless of course you are partial to drinking gravy) . So avoid all liquid sources of calories all together. No juice, no soda and politely decline the egg nog. This one is easy – if a drink has calories DON’T drink it. There are plenty of non-caloric beverages you can enjoy without having to wear drawstring sweatpants the rest of the year. Try carbonated water with fresh or frozen fruit added. It is festive and tasty.
4) Bye Bye Booze
While we are on the topic of liquids to not consume – avoid the hooch too. I can’t think of a more potentially damaging substance you can let in your body than alcohol. Not only does it add the dreaded “empty” calories, it sets your hormones up for fat storage. (Ever hear of a “beer belly”?) But the news gets worse – this hormonal backlash can last days. Yes, DAYS. Will a glass of wine or two doom you to a holiday season of fatitude? Nope, but the more you limit the booze the more you limit the stress on your belt.
5) Don’t Drive Angry or Arrive Hungry
You know the saying “don’t drive angry”? Well that is true because when you do, bad things happen. It is for that very same reason that I tell you not to arrive hungry. Because bad stuff will go into your mouth. If you go back to tip #1 you’ll see that you need to be prepared, and that means don’t show up at your party already starving. Without hesitation you can speed through an hors d’oeuvres spread like a reindeer through the night sky. Have a protein based snack or meal prior to your arrival. If you don’t plan ahead it’s like going to the store hungry, you end up buying crap you don’t want and more importantly don’t need. Kick hunger to the curb before the big event to avoid becoming a holiday human vacuum cleaner.
6) Take It On The Go
This one takes a few of the others tips a bit further. You see, whenever I go anywhere I know EXACTLY what food I have available to me and where my next meal is coming from. I have to. I can’t assume I’ll figure it out when I get there. Historically that would set me up for failure. And if you are anything like me – “playing it by ear” when it comes to fat loss doesn’t work for you either. So if I don’t I know where my next fat loss approved meal will come from I can rely on my secret stash of healthy awesomeness. I always pack a little bag of portable protein with me. Cheese sticks, low sugar jerky and the small packs of almonds from Trader Joe’s are my go-to foods.
7) Watch Your Step
Ok, here’s the scenario: You’re at a party and you want to cheat. You want to mow down the buffet and decimate the desert table. You know you do. Eh, probably not such a great idea. This is a slippery slope my friend. You’ll eat “just that one” cupcake, potato chip, cookie, or some holiday treat and the next thing you know you are in full “screw it “mode. So then you’ll eat another holiday goodie, and another, and another. Within minutes operation “Stuff Your Pie Hole” is in full effect.
Has this ever happened to you? It definitely has to me (more than once I’m sorry to say). The key is to watch out for “trigger” foods. For me brownies is a big one – even a whiff of that chocolatey goodness can get me in a shark-like feed frenzy. But for you it might be some other food entirely. For some people its potato chips (remember that Lay’s Potato Chips ad where the say “no one can eat just one”?) Here’s what you do: Recognize your triggers and do what you can to avoid them. Seems stupid but it works. Ask yourself is eating that “one little thing” going to send you over the edge, and whether you are prepared to take that chance.
Bonus tip #8) Don’t skip the workout!
This time of the year people are busy. Busy traveling, visiting and cooking. But is that any reason to skip your stress re leaving, fat burning, amazing feeling workout?? NOPE! If you get out of the routine now, it could set you up for missing weeks until January. Don’t do it!
Impact Fitness schedule through the holidays will be NO classes on Thursday of thanksgiving, Monday Dec 24th or Tuesday Dec 25th for Christmas. Otherwise get your butt in here for a gut busting workout!