1. Remember, a holiday is a DAY. Don’t spend it making up for all the cheesecake you’ve missed out on the rest of the year; have a slice. Then get back on track tomorrow.
2. Shop online. Surprised to hear me say that? During this busy season, you could opt to run yourself ragged, stay out late shopping, and well, treat yourself to a few late-night donuts, as a reward for finding just the right table lamp for your aunt. Forget it. Stay home, get organized, sip some hot chamomile tea (zero calories), and hit overstock.com; that’s what they’re there for. Save your energy for your workout.
3. Work out. (You knew that was coming, LOL!) There are no excuses, and it will keep you centered, grounded and focused, during this chaotic season.
4. Buy an incredibly sexy red dress in your “skinny size” for that holiday party you’ve been invited to. Cut off the labels and throw them away. There. Now you have to stay on track.
5. Water. It’s a wonderful thing. It hydrates, detoxifies, and helps you feel full. It helps your skin stay clear. Rehydrate after burning fat from your workout. (See Tip #3.)
6. Repeat after me: “White meat, please.” “Yes, plain baked yam.” “No thanks— no room on my plate for that buttermilk biscuit studded with globs of cheddar cheese, thanks just the same.”
White meat turkey has about half the fat of dark meat. You don’t need butter on the yam; sprinkle some cinnamon. No explanation should be needed about the biscuit.
7. You know those decorative treats displayed in the lunchroom at holiday time? They are loaded with sugar, butterfat, carbohydrates, and secret ingredients that add cellulite to your hips. See Tip #4.
8. Pass the gravy, please— and keep passing it. Gravy is made up of flour, salt, turkey fat, and broth. Do you really need to make that swimming pool in your mashed potatoes?
9. Be prepared! Have protein-rich snacks on hand at work; nibble a few nuts or seeds or whole-grain crackers to stave off hunger before a party; have a glass of soymilk to ease those hungry grumblings.
10. Carry your weight-loss journal with you, now more than ever. It was easy in the summer, what with lighter meals and all those fresh local veggies. Give yourself a fighting chance this season!
11. At holiday parties, fill up on healthy stuff; i.e., fresh raw veggies without the dip, plain chicken or turkey. That entitles you to a nibble of calorie-rich desserts— and this way you can honestly say you tried everything.
12. Walk around and talk to people. Concentrate on socializing, not on endeavoring to sample each and every delicacy on the buffet.
13. Don’t give in. “You just gotta try this,” says someone who is supposed to be your friend, as she shoves a concoction made of cream cheese, whipped cream, dried fruit and God-knows-what-else practically into your face. You don’t gotta.