Thanksgiving pies, eggnog sprinkled with cinnamon, cookies left out for Santa, New Year’s Eve champagne…the holiday season revolves around delicious food. The emphasis on celebration foods and the many commitments we make around this time of year, can make it almost impossible to stay on track with our nutrition and exercise goals.  By making mindful choices you can enjoy the festivities while still avoiding holiday weight gain.  Try following these holiday eating and exercise tips to help you stay on course.

Don’t go to a Party Hungry
Always have a snack before you head out. If you’ve already eaten an apple, you’re less likely to fill up on the goodies your host puts out. Drinking water also helps combat this. If you can bring your own dish, it ensures you’ll have a healthy option.

Go For A Walk
A great way to balance out increased caloric intake is by moving more. Take a walk during your lunch break, stand up and stretch every hour, or hire a personal trainer. Personal trainers will keep you motivated and hold you accountable.

Holiday Cooking Tips
Small swaps in your holiday cooking can really add up.  For healthier baking consider replacing part or all of the sugar in a recipe with a healthier alternative such as Stevia or Monk Fruit sweetener.  Instead of sauteing vegetables in butter, try drizzling them with a little olive oil, salt, & pepper, and roasting them in the oven.

Participate in Holiday Activities
There’s almost always a local 5k Thanksgiving morning. Many families also enjoy a fun game of football before dinner or a walk after dinner. These are all great ways to get moving before or after diving into a plate of turkey and cranberry sauce. In addition, other 5Ks, such as the Ugly Sweater Run, can help you stay active throughout December.  The key is to keep moving.

Drink Responsibly
Liquid calories add up faster. If you’re going to indulge in some holiday cocktails, try choosing clear liquors mixed with seltzer water or a sugar free mixer. This can significantly cut down the calories. It’s also a good idea to drink a glass of water after every cocktail.

Stick to a Routine
Having a schedule to follow makes it more likely you’ll stick to a workout schedule and healthy meal plans. Veering off track a little isn’t as damaging when you have a solid plan in place.

Get Sleep
Trying to get through the day on a small amount of sleep is difficult enough, but avoiding sweets on those days is incredibly difficult. A lack of sleep increases cravings. It also makes it harder to work up the energy needed to make a healthy meal or head to your Pilates group.

Don’t deprive yourself. This will make binge eating more likely.  Instead, avoid holiday overeating by filling up on vegetables and protein first, then you only have a little room left for a sweet treat.  Make the most of those sweet treats by practicing mindful eating, noticing and enjoying each bite of food.

If you need help staying on track this holiday season, the personal trainers at C.O.R.E. Personal Training and Pilates Studio can help, call us at 703-490-2673 or send us an email:  [email protected]

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