Slimming down BEFORE the holidays!
It’s that time again! The holiday season is approaching and it seems that the last few months of the year are designed to ruin any fitness or weight loss progress we’ve made throughout the year. First comes Halloween with buckets of candy, then the Thanksgiving feast, followed by holiday parties, Christmas dinner and New Year’s drinks! That’s at least a 5lbs weight gain right there! Although it’s fun to enjoy the holidays and all that comes with it, it’s important to take care of our bodies right now, so going into the holidays so you can avoid putting on that extra weight. Here are a few things you can do to slim down and stay on track going into this busy season;
1)Exercise consistency -although it gets harder to exercise when the days get shorter, finding some type of exercise you enjoy will help you stick with it throughout the holiday season. Now is the time to sign up for that indoor group fitness class you’ve always to try or get that gym membership. From biking, hiking to skiing, there are lots of options here in the Northwest to get your body moving and most importantly, being consistent at it. Even taking a 20 min walk to a holiday party will help burn some extra calories.
2) Limit the amount of social engagements before the holiday season starts. Going to social gatherings can be difficult sometimes if you have goals. Happy hour cocktails, bread baskets and buffets are usually a part of most social gatherings. Anytime you can limit these engagements or cut back it will ultimately help on trimming the waistline for the holidays, and then enjoying these times during the holiday season.
3) Practice Portion control. Learn proper portion sizes for your proteins, carbs and fats so when the holiday season arrives, you’re able to “eyeball” what a serving should be when you’re at a party or at the Thanksgiving & Christmas feasts. It’s so typical to want to “save up” for the Thanksgiving or Christmas feast only to be derailed by over indulging in 2-3x the normal portion sizes. Its best to eat consistently throughout the day of the feast in order to control portion sizes at feast time.
3) Get prepared for the holiday season by researching healthier alternatives traditional holiday dishes. Research how you can cut calories or use substitutes’ in your holiday baking or appetizers. Here’s my “go to” alternative dish to heavy mash potatoes, I make for both Thanksgiving and Christmas Dinner;
‘Healthier’ Holiday Yams:
Yam mixture 6 -8 yams -peeled & boiled (or baked) 1/4 cup sugar free syrup 1 tsp Cinnamon 1 can pumpkin purée ½ cup Milk (optional)
Yam Topping: 2 cups oats (ground into a flour in the blender) 2 tbsp. coconut oil 1 cup pecans Agave sweetener or stevia to taste
1)Peel and boil yams. Once yams are soft, remove from the water and begin to mash them until they are soft.
2)Add the syrup, cinnamon, pumpkin puree and milk to the yam mixture and mix well.
3) Pour yam mixture into a baking dish and spread evenly.
4)In a separate bowl, mix together ingredients for the yam topping.
5)Spread the yam topping over the yam mixture.
6)Bake covered in tin foil for approx. 45 mins at 350 degrees. During the last 10 mins, remove foil and bake uncovered.