We all love the holiday season and the tasty meals and desserts, but wish they wouldn’t cause the extra pounds on your belly later. According to research, the overeating during the holiday season will surely lead to weight gain. However, if you exercise and learn how to eat smart, you’ll be able to enjoy all the tastiness of the holiday season without the dreaded weight gain.
Experts say that implementing some smart habits into your holiday routine can help you stay on track and prevent the excess pounds on your frame. Here are 13 simple tricks that will help you get through the holidays easily:
Enter the holiday season with specific intentions
In order to prevent the overeating and stay in shape, you need to enter the holidays with specific intentions on your mind. Limiting your desserts to one per day or exercising 3 times a week are a few good ideas. Setting these goals will remind you of the bigger picture and help you stay motivated.
Eat the most nutritious foods at parties first
Instead of the meat or cheese platter when at a party, fill your plate with veggies or fruits. They contain almost all the nutrients your body needs and will prevent overeating. The rest of the plate should be filled with grains and protein, so you can grab your favorite treat. As one expert says, if you want to enjoy something once or twice, go ahead, but don’t make it into a habit.
Drink plenty of water
Staying hydrated during the holiday season is of vital important for your figure and health. Water will prevent dehydration and prevent you from overeating. According to one study, two glasses of water before a meal can significantly cut down the risk of obesity.
Exercise in the AM
When scheduling an exercise session, keep it in the day. Starting the day with a metabolism-boosting set of exercises will help improve your energy levels and help you burn more calories during the day. Working out in the AM will boost both your body and mind, which will definitely help you be more focused at work.
Pack healthy snacks for work
Packing healthy snacks for work such as almonds, cashews, coconut or dark chocolate will help you stay away from chips and other types of unhealthy snacks. Don’t worry – just because they’re healthy it doesn’t mean they’re not tasty. Just try apples with a bit of cinnamon and you’ll get the idea.
Be mindful of what and how you eat
What you eat and how you eat it is seriously important for your health and weight. Mindless eating will lead to choosing the wrong foods and overeating, and according to research, people who are distracted by the TV when eating usually ignore how full they feel and end up overeating. So, when you sit on the table for eating, get some time off the TV or smartphone, chew slowly and savor each bite. This will help you stay in shape.
Take a walk after lunch
Instead of spreading out on your bed after a meal, you should start moving. According to experts, a nice walk after a heavy lunch or dinner will boost your circulation, regulate your blood sugar levels and help you burn calories faster.
Move more during the day
Sitting for prolonged periods will slow down your metabolism and inhibit the calorie expenditure. Luckily, adding small changes in your daily routine such as taking the stairs instead of the elevator or parking far from your workplace can keep your metabolism running and your energy levels up. Moving more during the day will also reinforce your muscles and bones.
Don’t go out on an empty stomach
Going out with your friends on an empty stomach will only increase your cravings and raise the risk of indulging in unhealthy foods. When going out, make sure to eat a nice meal before, or at least take some snacks.
Try a HIIT workout
HIIT workouts last for less time than hitting the gym and are highly effective for your metabolism and health. 20 minutes of HIIT will make your body burn calories for the next 49 hours, and the best part is that these exercises can be performed anywhere.
Make healthy versions of your favorite treats
Changing one ingredient in your treats for a healthier alternative is easy and will make a big difference without changing the taste. Nut milk, dates and bananas are natural sweeteners which you can use instead of maple syrup or sugar.
Don’t be depressed if you slip up
If you get off track, don’t beat yourself up. One mistake shouldn’t really ruin everything for you – just make sure it won’t happen again. Just keep your head up and start again.