The holidays are often full of parties and yummy food. While fun, it can often lead to unwanted weight gain. Thankfully, there are ways to avoid gaining weight without sacrificing too much. Here are ten practical ways to stay fit during the holidays and avoid regret come January.
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Portion control is always a great way to manage your diet. It’s even more important during the holidays. Implement portion controls during your meals, and do the same when at parties.
Moderation is your friend. It gives you the ability to enjoy a treat without going overboard. The key is to eat until you’re satisfied, not full.
Plan Your Exercising
The holiday season is typically busier for most people. It’s easy to forego your normal exercise routine, but that can backfire.
Schedule your exercise, even if it means you need to get up earlier in the morning.
Have a Plan
Going to different holiday events can make it easy for you to skip your normal eating habits. Do this at your own peril.
If need be, write out your plan and do your best to keep to your normal habits. Giving into a few indulgences is one thing, but disregarding what you normally do can result in unwanted weight gain.
Exercise With a Partner
Studies show that if you do a less than pleasant activity with a partner, it increases your chances of success. Exercising with a partner is no different.
Plan out exercise routines with family members and friends. This gets you more time together during the season and helps you both stay fit.
Having a drink at a holiday party is fun, but it also leads to empty calories. Pair that with a few treats, and you may have an extra 1,000 calories an evening.
That can add up. Instead, opt for non-alcoholic drinks or reduce the number you have.
Indulge For an Evening, Not the Entire Season
Moderation is your friend. Enjoying one evening or two isn’t going to destroy your waistline. However, the same can’t be said of enjoying without caution.
Identify one or two nights you want to indulge and keep to that plan.
Keep Track of What You’re Eating
It’s often best to think of eating like budgeting. You have a certain number of calories you can have and once you go beyond that, you risk weight gain.
A food journal is a fantastic way to manage your eating. Write down everything you consume so you can make educated decisions.
Don’t Skimp on Sleep
Going to bed at a reasonable time has numerous benefits. One key benefit is it helps you avoid unhealthy snacks right before bed.
Lack of sleep can also impact decision-making and mental health. Think of it this way: if you get to bed at a good hour, you’re not eating.
Eat Before You Go to A Party
Holiday parties are often full of calorie-rich foods that offer limited nutritional value. If you’re really trying to stay fit, eat before going to a party.
This helps ensure you can eat what you want and manage your food intake.
One of the easiest ways to avoid overindulging is to drink lots of water. If you feel fuller, you’re likely going to eat less. That’s a win-win that helps in your desire to stay fit.
Furthermore, there are numerous other health benefits to drinking water.
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I’m John Schmoll, a former stockbroker, MBA-grad, published finance writer, and founder of Frugal Rules.
As a veteran of the financial services industry, I’ve worked as a mutual fund administrator, banker, and stockbroker and was Series 7 and 63-licensed, but I left all that behind in 2012 to help people learn how to manage their money.
My goal is to help you gain the knowledge you need to become financially independent with personally-tested financial tools and money-saving solutions.