“What you do every day matters more than what you do every once in a while!”
The holidays are filled with cheer but they are also filled with rich foods, chocolate, candy, treats, and very often some cocktails or alcohol. So how do you make sure that all the hard work you put into keeping your body trim and healthy this year isn’t lost in just a few weeks.
Long walks and runs outside are kind of hard in the winter here in Utah, the cold is bitter and the inversion makes it unhealthy to breath too much of that air. Exercise requires a lot of commitment and with the “to do” lists that seem to get longer every day, it is so hard that sometimes it gets put off or just missed.
Good chocolate is one of my weaknesses, and it seems like “just one” always leads to another! Salads don’t seem as appealing and seem to be replaced with more warm dishes like soups, chilli, and baked potatoes, all of which are much more substantial and have a higher caloric value.
So how do you make sure that by the time the holidays are over, you are not going to roll into the New Year? Here are some tactics that I use, and they have always worked for me…
- Don’t tell yourself you can’t have a treat, but rather ration how many you have. If you tell yourself you can’t or that you can only have carrots, or some alternative that isn’t anywhere near as good, you will rebel against yourself and end up eating more than if you let yourself have one or two!
- Want a dessert? Go for it, but again ration how much you have. Portion control has always been something that I have exercised. I like to try lots of different things, and always make sure that I balance my meals with the right amount of vegetables, protein, fats and carbs (I don’t ever avoid carbs because I need them for energy).
- Allow yourself one or two “cheat days” each week, that way you don’t have to feel guilty or bad about anything you are eating.
- Dedicate 20 minutes every other day even if it is just at home to do a few exercises like lunges, squats, crunches, and curls. I even do a few each night while I am waiting for my bath or while I am watching my latest DVR TV show.
- Drink a fresh squeezed veggie drink at least once a week, to balance out the not so good stuff you may have eaten or drunk all week.
The holidays should be a fun time and beating yourself up or telling yourself NO is not going to make it enjoyable! If you are not creating long term bad habits it’s really not going to hurt you just for a few weeks, but it is definitely still better to be in control. Enjoy your holidays and remember, moderation is key!