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Avoid Gaining Weight This Holiday
still enjoying the festivities
This holiday season don't be
trendy - avoid the Seasonal Seven (the average weight most Americans gain
between Thanksgiving and New Year's). That's one trend you don't want to
I know what you are thinking - the holidays are
a time for fun and indulgence. You don't want to think about fitness during
that time. You want to enjoy yourself. Don't worry! The festivities
don't have to be eliminated or avoided. You can have a fabulous time while
also maintaining your weight and your fitness regimen.
The secret to achieving a
holiday season that is both full of fun and also includes fitness is found in
moderation. There are two typical approaches to the seasonal festivities: 1)
throw all healthy habits out the window and indulge in every guilty pleasure 2)
starve and binge approach (for example, you eat nothing all day long to allow
yourself to overindulge in party food). Of
course, neither approach is successful at maintaining a healthy, fit lifestyle
throughout the holiday season.
As mentioned above, the key is
found in moderation. With a moderate approach both to what you eat (or don't
eat) and how much exercise you do (or don't do), you can avoid packing on
extra weight AND also partake in all the fun of the season. So this season, get
a head start on the New Year instead of starting January with extra pounds to
Here are some tips to help you:
a plan ahead of time. Before the holidays sneak up on you, create a plan for
incorporating fitness and good nutrition into your daily routine. Evaluate your
holiday schedule and then determine how much time you will realistically have
available to devote to working out and/or eating healthy meals.
put your fitness goals on hold until the New Year. If you can't exercise as
often during this time period as you normally do, adjust appropriately. Don't
use the excuse that since you don't have time for your full workout you just
won't workout at all. Instead accept your limited availability and simply
reduce the frequency and/or duration of your exercise. It's much better to cut
your fitness time in half than to completely eliminate it.
the day of a party, be sure to eat regularly all day long. If the party is in
the evening, eat breakfast, lunch and a snack before hand (just as you would on
any other day). Once you are at the party, go ahead and indulge in some of the
fun, delicious foods. Since you have eaten meals earlier in the day, you
probably will find that you aren't tempted to go overboard and eat everything
in sight. However, if you starve all day long attempting to save up all your
calories for the party, you will be so famished by the time it begins that it
will be difficult not to overeat.
your workouts. Mark them on the calendar and set-aside time to complete them.
Consider them as important as any other appointment or event you have marked on
at a party, start by eating some of the healthy offerings. For example,
vegetable sticks (without dip), fruit pieces, plain chicken pieces, etc. Then
move on to some of the less healthy (but yummy) offerings. You will be less
likely to overindulge on these foods if you have already filled-up on some of
the healthier items. Yet, you will not feel deprived or unsatisfied.
days that you really lack motivation or simply do not have time for your
complete exercise routine, commit to do
just 10 minutes of exercise. You'll probably end up doing more than that
once you get started. Even if you only end up completing 10 minutes, that is
still a lot better than zero minutes.
When presented with a large variety of food options,
it's tempting to want to eat everything. Rather than eating one large slice of
chocolate cake or a huge plate of meatballs, select a sampling of bite size
pieces of several of the desert or appetizer offerings. This way you get the
enjoyment of trying many different foods without overeating.
Exercise at home. You'll be more inclined to
follow-through on your exercise commitment if you don't have to drive
somewhere to do your workout. Plus, you won't waste any time on driving,
parking, the locker room or waiting to use equipment. Working out at home
requires very little equipment (even can be equipment-free) and is quite
Avoid wasting calories on alcoholic beverages. The
average alcoholic drink contains 150-200 calories per glass. Indulge in just 2-3
drinks and you've drunk the equivalent calories of an entire meal. If you
partake in these beverages, choose wisely. For example, instead of having a full
glass of wine, try mixing half a glass of wine with sparkling water or with a
diet cola. This will help cut your calories in half.
running errands or shopping, be sure to pack some healthy snacks to have
on-hand. Then after you work-up a big appetite, you won't be tempted to grab
something at the mall food court or the fast food restaurant on the way home.
Hopefully these tips will help
you find a balance between staying fit and also enjoying the fun of the season.
Remember, moderation is the key. Have a great holiday season!
Lynn Bode, author
and certified personal trainer, offers her services online through
Workouts For You provides
affordable online exercise programs to help even
the busiest of people lose weight, tone-up, build muscles, increase
stamina and more via the Internet. Let us
guide you one-on-one through your fitness journey. Visit: http://www.workoutsforyou.com for
a free sample workout.
If you would like to publish
this article in print or electronically, please contact Lynn at email@example.com
About the author: Lynn Bode is a certified personal trainer specializing in
Internet-based fitness programs. She founded Workouts For You, which
provides affordable online exercise programs that are custom designed for
each individual. Visit: http://www.workoutsforyou.com for a free sample
workout and to sign-up for their monthly fitness newsletter. Fitness
professionals, visit: http://www.trainerforce.com
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