Ho, ho … No!
Maintain, Don’t Gain!
It’s like a minefield in front of you … cakey socials at church, boozy parties at work, sugar-drenched shindigs with family. December can be hazardous if you’re trying to lose weight!
Relax. You can enjoy the holidays without gaining any weight or losing sight of your goals. During the years following my time on NBC’s The Biggest Loser, where I lost 185 pounds, I learned how to enjoy the holidays … and still stay on course.
My holiday eating advice falls into three steps that correspond with the three areas of my 6-week SLIM U™ Seminar – Master Your Mind, Manage Your Mouth and Multiply Your Muscle.
1. Plan to Succeed.
- Plan ahead. If you know you’re going to a party, plan ahead and save a few calories from lunch for that special desert. But don’t skip lunch completely – that could lead to binging.
- Clear the table. Immediately after dinner, put the sweets and tempting foods in the refrigerator, out of sight. This way if you really want something else to eat you will have to dig for it.
- Send food away with guests. Pack up the leftovers and make your guests take it home. This will keep you from mindless snacking.
2. Pick your Poison.
- Keep low calorie treats on hand. Low cal cheeses, Jell-O, air-popped popcorn, cherries, dried fruit or nuts – but watch the quantity, since a handful of some snacks can add up to 200 calories or more.
- Curb your appetite by filling up on safer low calorie foods like salads before the parties. But watch the cheese, croutons and dressings, which can turn a 300-calorie salad into a 600 high-calorie meal.
- Don’t deny – modify. Nobody wants you to act like the Grinch for the holidays. You can have your slice of pie. Work it into your daily calories by keeping a calorie “checkbook.” That means that you have to become educated about calories and your body’s requirements (visit WinningMan.com for an explanation).
- Know your enemy. Sneak into the kitchen if you have to and see what kind of calories are in the foods you’re eating. You can find almost everything in “The Calorie King” so carry a copy with you.
3. Pull your weight.
- Exercise daily. Yes, this is a holiday eating tip! If you burn extra calories through exercise, it will help offset the extra calories you take in.
- Exercise the morning OF and the morning AFTER the holiday. Most gyms have special early holiday classes. The endorphin and serotonin released from exercise will help you throughout the day to remain more focused on your health and eating goals.
- Start your New Year’s resolution early! The number one News Year’s resolution is to lose weight. It is also the first resolution to be broken each year. Do something different this holiday season to get better results, and get a jumpstart on your 2011 weight-loss goals!
Pete Thomas is a full-time motivational speaker, teacher, author, wellness consultant and “NBC’s The Biggest Loser” Season 2 At-Home Winner. Email your questions or comments to Pete at Questions@PeteThomas.com