Thrive This Holiday Season

6 Tips to Minimize Mindless Munching and Maximize Goals

Nothing ruffles my garland like seeing and hearing people talk about “surviving” the holiday season. It’s just so bah humbug. Yeah… there are lines and empty calories everywhere, but that’s a small price to pay for all the love, joy, gratitude, giving, gathering and fun that comes along with it, right?

So instead of just surviving this holiday season, let’s thrive. To do so, we must strike a balance between healthy enjoyment and excessive indulgence. There’s no reason why we can’t enjoy the season’s treats within reason. (Believe me… there is no way I’m giving up holiday cookies completely.)

However, we get into trouble during the holidays (or anytime for that matter) when we eat or drink mindlessly. You know what I’m referring to… the grazing while you gab, having “just one bite” too many times or overindulging in holiday libations and letting loose at the dessert table. It happens. You head to a holiday event with good intentions, but before you know it, you feel as stuffed as a stocking on Christmas morning.

Since the string of holiday parties and events will soon commence, I assembled six tips to help minimize the mindless munching and keep your fitness goals on track. Give these a try:

“What would Awesome Me do?” I overheard someone say this the other day in evaluating a decision. It made me giggle at the time, but it stuck. I propose we use this phrase to help us manage mindless holiday munching. Before you take a bite or get a refill, ask yourself, “What would Awesome Me do?” It’ll help you pay attention, evaluate the consequences of our decisions (i.e., bloated, hangover, feeling terrible, guilt) and actively choose holiday indulgences you really want.

Decide in advance. Along the lines of aligning your choices with your awesome self, before a holiday event, decide what and how much you are comfortable drinking and/or eating. This allows you to make a sound decision before your good reason is drowned out by eggnog.

Ban the baggy. Winter layers hide bad behavior, so I make sure to keep body-hugging clothes in the rotation. Try wearing a fitted top or dress to help you to remember to keep the diet tight— no one wants to spend the evening sucking in a sugar plum-stuffed stomach.

Do the bracelet switch. Have a hard time keeping track of your holiday libations or cookies? Use your jewelry to help you keep count. Wear a set of bangles and switch bracelets from one arm to the other each time you have an indulgence.

Out of sight, out of mind. Or, as I like to say, “No gazing, no grazing.” You can minimize temptation by hanging out away from the food table or by, at the least, keeping your back to it. Instead, focus on having great conversation with friends and family or getting your honey under the mistletoe.

Keep your hands full. Keep your hands occupied to minimize the grazing. Carry a cute clutch, have a camera and take lots of pictures, double-fist your bottles of water and/or hold hands with your love.

Push Toward Your Best
In the spirit of thriving this holiday season, I say we add a new challenge to our fitness program. From now through the end of the month, add a set of unweighted squats to the end of your workout. Begin with 20 on the first day and add in 10 every day through the end of the month. By the 31st, you’ll have worked up to 280 unweighted squats, burned off the bon bons and kept that booty beautiful. Keep pushing— your best is waiting.

Your Best is presented by Gaspari Nutrition.

Jaime Baird

Jaime Baird is the Online Editor-in-Chief of FitnessRx For Women and IFBB Bikini Pro. Her life’s mission is to help others, especially women, achieve their best in health and life.

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