Cut yourself some slack. The holidays are a time for enjoying family & friends. There’s nothing worse than post holiday guilt for enjoying time… and treats with loved ones. Know that you can succeed by taking things one step at a time. And if you slip up, remember there aren’t may that can reach a goal without making any mistakes along the way. Then, just focus on getting back on track because the stress - just ain’t worth it. "A Yale University study found that women who secreted the most cortisol (a hormone released during stress) ate the most high-fat food after stress. The combination of cortisol and insulin prompts the body to store fat in preparation for possible starvation — just what you don’t need.”
2) Keep Eating
After a month of binge eating, skipping a meal or two might seem like a great idea. But, that will not only just make you hungrier, but you’re more likely to cave into cravings with more binge eating. Plus if you skip too many meals, instead of losing fat, you’ll be losing muscle. The key is to eat more often. Eating smaller meals more frequently helps to curb your appetite, boost your metabolism, and improve your mood & energy. Just be sure to watch what you eat. Columbia University reports that skipping meals regularly can have health consequences that range from mild to severe. Fatigue, dizziness or fainting are among the most mild; in the long term, you may also notice anemia, bone loss, thyroid function impairment, decreased immunity and worsening dental health. Ready to eat now?
Let’s face it. Just thinking about losing weight doesn’t cut it. Be sure to write your specific weight loss goals down on paper to help you keep track. People who don’t write down their goals tend to fail easier than the ones who have plans. By giving yourself a specific goal, it becomes verifiable. You can also plan your meals and workouts to gauge your progress. Just be sure to build in splurges so that you don’t feel deprived and revert to binge eating. And, have a “party plan.” If you know you have an upcoming party on the calendar, offer to bring a dish. By arriving with a healthy option - or two, you’ll be sure to have something to munch on - without the guilt.
4) Watch the Liquids
Most of the time that we think we’re hungry, we’re actually thirsty. So, be sure that you’re getting enough water daily. The recommended amount is usually eight 8-ounce glasses a day. Besides hydration, drinking water has a host of other benefits. Water will help you feel full, increase metabolism and boost energy. Just be sure you mind the other liquids. Did someone say cocktails? Remember, alcohol is a source of calories. A 12-ounce beer has 150 calories, with 85 calories in a 3.5-ounce glass of wine. A margarita packs a bigger caloric punch. And even worse are creamy cocktails, such as Brandy Alexanders and mudslides — equivalent to drinking a rich dessert.
5) Get Moving
If your only workout over the holidays was unbuttoning your pants to squeeze in more food, don’t worry – just get moving. Since we all know physical activity helps to burn calories, aside from working out, you can also find other ways to increase your daily activity. Whether cleaning your home, walking to/from work, taking the stairs instead of the elevator or gardening - look for little ways that you can burn calories. It does add up. And the great thing is that the more you exercise, the less you need to reduce your food intake. Good news to us foodies!