During the holidays, temptation seems to be everywhere you look. When you can’t simply say “no” to every delicious dish you come across, moderation may be the next best solution. Still, some people start out with the goal of eating small amounts of their favorite foods, but it’s not long before they fall off the wagon. The following three tips will make it easy for you to manage your weight even during the most delicious season of the year. You’ll be happy when January rolls around and it’s easy to get back on track!
1. Commit yourself to exercising.
When you can’t completely avoid delicious foods, the next best thing is exercising daily. Hit the gym in the morning and take a walk after especially big meals. You won’t lose weight if you’re indulging regularly, but you may at least be able to maintain your weight until your diet evens out a bit. Plus, you’ll feel less tempted to eat bad-for-you-foods that you’re not actually craving if you’ve put in some time on the treadmill. Another bonus is that when you work out, your metabolism continues to work effectively for the next few hours, meaning you can have less guilt about that extra serving of mashed potatoes.
2. Hop on the scale a couple times a week.
The holidays stretch for several weeks from Thanksgiving to New Year’s Day. If you’re gaining slowly during this time, you may not even realize it until it’s too late. To keep yourself on track and get a good handle on your weight, weigh yourself two times a week. The best time to weigh yourself is first thing in the morning, when your stomach’s empty and before you’ve had anything to eat or drink. If you notice that you’ve gained a pound or two, you’ll know to be extra careful for the next week.
3. Be extra selective about sweets.
By the end of the meal, you’re bound to still have room for dessert, even if you think you’ve stuffed yourself as much as possible. Be super picky when it comes to the sweets that you choose. Only opt for the desserts that are truly delicious to you; don’t waste your calories on so-so desserts that don’t taste great. If you can trust yourself to try just one bite of a small selection of desserts, go for it. If you know you’ll eat the entire selection, though, pick just one dessert and portion out one serving.
Whatever you do, don’t throw caution to the wind, assuming you’ll get the weight off in the new year. Even if you only put on a pound or two, experts say that people who gain weight during the holidays never get around to getting it off. Year after year, those pounds will add up. The good news is that you can avoid this weight gain trap and still enjoy the foods you wait for all year long. There’s nothing wrong with having your cake and eating it too once in a while.