The holiday season is upon us, and with it comes its share of festivities and countless opportunities to indulge in hearty food and alcoholic beverages. However, as we enter the new year, the extra pounds we gained during the holidays all too often leave a bitter aftertaste in our mouths.
This year, I’ll help you stay one step ahead by giving you five simple tricks to make sure you feel good about your body after all the celebrations.
If you’re the kind of person who likes to skip meals to “leave room,” I encourage you to change that habit. Not eating one meal often results in overeating during the next one to compensate.
Make sure to stay in control of your appetite by eating small meals and snacks every three to four hours and, most importantly, before leaving for dinner so you don’t arrive famished. Also, remember to enjoy an energizing breakfast in the morning to keep you going all day. This will make it easier to resist the buffet or other foods as soon as you walk through the door.
Yes, eating well is possible even during the holidays. Here are some tips from our nutritionist, Isabelle Huot:
Take your time and savour the flavours of each bite. You’ll feel full faster.
Because alcohol is dehydrating and stimulates the appetite, make sure you drink at least one large glass of water between alcoholic beverages. In addition to curbing your appetite, it will help you reduce how much alcohol you consume.
Cocktails, a holiday favourite, play a non-negligible role in weight gain due to their often staggeringly high sugar content. Instead, choose drinks with lower sugar content, such as a glass of champagne or white wine to enjoy with family and friends. Also, drink mineral water during appetizers.
Don’t neglect your exercise routine, especially if it’s been part of your regular schedule for a while, otherwise it will be harder to get back to it after the holidays. That being said, we understand that time is a big factor during this festive season. Shorten your workouts or choose a 30- or 45-minute group class, like our Adrenaline, LesMills CXWORX, or LesMills RPM classes. This will allow you to keep up with your routine and give you more time to prepare for your outings.
Another good way to stay active is going for a walk before or after meals to help digestion.
Yes, making good choices during the holidays is wise. However, it is also very important not to be hard on yourself if you deviate from your good habits. Enjoy the good times with your loved ones. Depriving yourself during your events will only leave you unhappy and famished.
You may eat a little more and take in more calories than usual, but by eating less the days before or after to “make up for it,” you’re only hurting your cause. This could throw your eating habits out of balance and cause you to lose control by triggering binge eating. Simply return to your normal rhythm and avoid the vicious cycle of overeating and dieting.