November and December tend to be the hardest months of the year to stay committed to a healthier lifestyle. And it can be pure torture for those of us who are trying to lose weight. Two main holiday's back to back that focus on eating and sugars and sweets can be hard on anyone's waistline. It was a major accomplishment for me, to enjoy Thanksgiving and several family gatherings last month and not gain any weight and to have actually lost two pounds since then.
However, with Christmas on the horizon and parties already underway, how are we supposed to enjoy ourselves and lose weight in the process?
Tips for Surviving Christmas
1. Eating large amounts of food and Christmas goodies will not make you happy. You may eye that Christmas buffet of sugars and sweets and think you've died and gone to Heaven but overindulging is not only bad for you, it's sinful. You may feel pleasure in the moment but it won't last. You will eventually feel guilty and remorseful. That being said...
2. Eat in moderation. You don't have to forego your favorite foods but you also don't have to make yourself sick or miserable. I can remember eating and eating until I was miserable and my pant's were uncomfortably tight. Use a small plate when you can and only dip a tasting of your favorite foods. The key is not to eat until you're full but until you're satisfied...there is a difference.
3. Eat only what you really want. I was raised in the south. It is considered bad manners to turn your nose up at something. You are supposed to at least try everything. I'm generally proud of my southern heritage but trust me when I say, that sometimes you've just got to let go of some rules or traditions if they are pointless. If you don't like something or if you just don't want something, don't feel obligated to try it. Why waste calories on something that you have to hold your nose to swallow in the first place? Especially when it comes to desserts, you don't have to sample everything just because it looks good. Eat only what you really, really, really want. Figure out what you can live without, what is not worth the extra calories, and leave it OFF of your plate.
4. Choose healthier options when you can. The fruit and veggie tray may not look as appetizing as say the Red Velvet Cheesecake Brownies but they are much better for you. And if the Red Velvet Cheesecake Brownies is something you can't live without, have some fruit first and then have a small piece and keep in mind the above rules.
5. Make time for exercise. By now, I'm hoping that daily exercise is a part of your routine and healthier lifestyle but it can be easy to skip out on your daily run or trip to the gym this time of year. December has to be the busiest month of the year. There is always some function or another to go to. So don't forget to make time for exercising and especially do it on those days that you know you're going to a party or event where treats and temptations will abound. Take an extra walk if your time allows. Get your family involved. Who says that you have to sit around all day on Christmas. Bundle up and get outside whether you take a walk, go for a bike ride, or play a game of football. The key is to get moving!
So, you see, it is possible to survive Christmas without adding inches to your waistline or pounds on the scale. I still have three more pounds to lose in order to meet my goal of losing five more pounds by the end of the year. I'll be living by these rules, not only for the remainder of December but always because they are good rules to live by. Who's with me???
Peace, Love, and Healthy Living,