The holiday season is a special time of year. It is also a time of year when many people gain unwanted weight. However, you don’t have to gain the standard holiday pounds. With a little foresight and planning you can avoid putting on extra weight during the holidays. Here are 9 ways to help you stay in shape during the holiday season.Try To Stay Physically Active During The HolidaysWhether it’s before, during or after the holidays, research shows that the main reason for weight gain is inactivity. So, even if you’re on vacation during the holiday season, try to stay as active as possible, take advantage of walking tours or the hotel fitness room. If you are already an active person, then try to keep up with the same activity level during the holiday.Exercise When You Can, As Often As You CanThe holiday season can be the time of year that becomes very busy for some people. What that might mean, therefore, is that exercise gets put off until after the holidays are over. And that is exactly the thing you shouldn’t do. If you can’t exercise much during the holidays because you’re busy with family obligations, shopping, etc, then exercise when you can. It’s much better to exercise some of the time than to not exercise at all. Additionally, when you go out for holiday shopping in the mall, start off with a brisk walk around the mall before you begin your shopping. Taking a 10 minute walk after dinner with your family is also another way to fit some exercise in.
Fill Up On Healthier Low Calorie FoodsWhen you go out for holiday meals, don’t fill your plate up with high calorie foods first. Instead, start with low-fat, healthier choices such as salads and vegetable dishes. Then move on to other options such as fish, skinless chicken, grilled meats and whole-grains. Foods such as these are more filling and, in the end, if you decide to have a slice of cake or something like this, you’re less likely to over-indulge.Eat Smaller Half PortionsEveryone likes to partake in all of the wonderful foods that are a part of the holiday season. If you do eat foods that are less than desirable for your diet, eat them in small portions. Don’t try full size portions of everything, pick a bit here and there.
Parties Are Not Just About The FoodWhen you go out for holiday parties and gatherings, don’t concentrate so much on the food. Instead, concentrate on the people that you’re spending time with, many of whom you may only see once a year. Forget food, have fun, laugh and have a memorable time.Avoid AlcoholThe average alcoholic drink contains about 200 calories per glass. Have enough of these and you will end up with the same amount of calories in a meal and you may still be hungry. Instead, save the calories on the alcoholic drink and have yourself a nice meal.Ask For And Give Health Related GiftsIf you’re asked, or if you’re given a choice, ask for health related gifts. For example, a workout video, an exercise outfit, a magazine subscription for fitness, exercise equipment or even membership in a fitness club are all viable options.
Eat On A Regular ScheduleSometimes during the holidays, things can get pretty hectic. The tendency then, may be to skip meals or eat erratically. However, try to prepare for this in advance by scheduling your meals throughout the day. And, at the very least, try to prepare healthy snacks in advance that you can eat throughout the day.Do Not Deprive Yourself But Indulge OccasionallyIf having a small slice of cake or some other holiday goodie that you enjoy will keep you from feeling deprived and then binging, then go ahead and have a small serving. But remember to control your portion. Also, doing a little extra exercise the next day is also a great way to counteract the calories you may have gained from the extra holiday food you might have eaten the day before.
Patricia is a health focused content author, today helping to avoid gaining holiday pounds. For more Diet and Fitness Tips please visit Patricia’s site.