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Avoid holiday weight gain with these three easy strategies

posted Nov 18, 2011, 7:25 PM by Mike Chen   [ updated Mar 21, 2012, 9:07 PM ]
There’s nothing better than spending time with family and friends over the holidays. Unfortunately, a majority of the time we spend laughing and catching up usually revolves around a massive feast. It’s no wonder that so many people resolve to lose weight in January – they’ve spent November and December eating with reckless abandon!

This year, set a goal before the holidays to maintain your weight through the season of parties, dinners, and treats so you’ll have no regrets starting the new year. Here are the top three ways to keep the weight off:

  • Maintain or refresh your workout routine.
    If you already have an established exercise routine, stick with it! Find the time to reap the immunity boosting, stress busting, and sanity saving rewards that it provides. If you aren’t regularly exercising, try to at least engage in regular daily walks to keep your metabolism revved and to burn some calories. Sneak in some brisk walking while you’re shopping for presents at the mall or park near the perimeter of the lot – you might have to anyway with all those other shoppers out and about!
  • Save treats for special occasions only.
    Are you a baking machine around the holidays? Try to avoid making an abundance of sweet breads, cookies, and pies to keep on hand over the holidays. While you might have good intentions of being able to offer something to unexpected guests, the reality is that you’ll be the one who ends up eating what you make. No treats in the kitchen means less temptation to resist! Certainly whip up whatever dish you’re known for and bring it to parties and family functions – just make sure to leave the leftovers with your host as a sweet reminder that you were there.
  • Make realistic, sustainable changes.
    Now is not the time to try a fast or a cleanse as a way to offset eating binges. You might lose a few pounds, but once you resume normal eating, they’ll quickly come back. Instead, make small changes and swaps that you can live with well past the holiday season. Switch out your daily soda habit for sparkling water with fruit. Make veggies cover most of your plate at dinner time and give a small sliver to meat and anything starchy. Turn commercial breaks into family push-up and sit-up challenges. Whatever changes you decide to implement, try to stick with them until they become second nature to you.
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