Christmas Fitness Surviving the Festive Season
Are you going to let the 12 days of Christmas over indulging take it’s toll on your waist line ? Here’s 12 healthy tips to help you beat the weight gain that will serve you all year long.
1. Most American restaurant portions are huge, when you eat dinner out, reduce the temptation to clean your plate. Get into the habit of setting aside one-third of your meal. Ask the server for a doggie bag, and take it home for lunch the next day. Try serving yourself one-third less at home too. This simple tactic could subtract more than 500 calories a day from your diet.
2. I recommend at least 8 glasses a day, you really can’t have too much especially if you are on a high protein diet as protein needs a lot more water than carbohydrates to digest properly. People often mistake thirst for hunger, so next time you feel like noshing, reach for water first. Drinking also helps you feel full, dehydration slows everything in your bodies system down and leaves you feeling tired, want more energy and to lose weight? Reach for the water.
3. Remember that alcohol is a source of empty calories. A 12-ounce beer has 150 calories; a 3.5-ounce glass of wine, 85. A margarita or fancy cocktail packs a bigger caloric punch. Even worse offenders are creamy cocktails, equivalent to drinking a rich dessert. I’m not saying don’t have a drink over the festive period but consider making smarter alcohol choices. A great habit to get into is drinking a glass of water every second or third drink and a pint before you go to sleep, which will also help with the hangover and dehydration, have I mentioned how good water is for you?
4. When attending a party, offer to bring a plate. Arriving armed with chopped fresh veggies and a low-fat dip — or any other low-calorie snack — ensures that you’ll have something to snack on without feeling guilty and keeps you on course for your fitness goals.
5. Soda’s are a major source of empty calories in the American and English diet. Full of sugar and even the diet ones are full of chemicals that will stimulate your appetite and make you eat more! (who knew) Shop bought fruit juice can contain just as much sugar and don’t even get me started on the preservatives and processing. You want fruit juice great, use a juicer it’s the only way to guarantee your drinking something healthy. Also fluids don’t satisfy your appetite as well as solids. A study at Purdue University found that when people were fed 450 sugar calories daily as jelly beans or as soda, the soda drinkers gained a significant amount of weight, but the jelly-bean eaters compensated for the extra calories by cutting back on other food. So if you crave something sweet, you’re better off chewing it than gulping it.
6. People who have kept their weight off for more than a few years tend to eat an average of four to five times a day. I don’t mean 5 huge dinners this includes healthy snacks. Light, frequent meals curb your appetite, boost your energy, and even improve your mood. Does eating more often speed your metabolism? Well opinions vary what I can tell you is (eating healthy) it helps balance your blood sugar which avoids the insulin spikes which will help you lose weight which is the same end result and even the process of digestion itself burns calories.
7. Studies suggest that the average craving lasts only about 10 minutes. So step away from the chocolate digestives and before caving in to your urge, set your mental timer for a 10-minute time-out. Use the time to tackle an item on your to-do list; choose one that will give you a sense of accomplishment — and get you out of the kitchen.
8. Research suggests that protein prolongs the feeling of fullness better than carbohydrates or fats do. Studies in Scotland, Denmark, Sweden and England found that people who ate a high-protein breakfast or lunch were less hungry at their next meal. Protein also requires a few more calories to digest.
9. Don’t try to overhaul your diet overnight. If you make too many changes at once, chances are you’ll get frustrated and throw in the towel. Instead, make one change a week, such as stop drinking soda or eating more salad then gradually over time you will eventually cut out the bad and build up the good.
10. Look for nutritious low-calorie alternatives to sugary, high-fat treats. Get a little education on what’s making people gain weight. Some fats are healthy processed food and sugar is the real villain of the piece.
11. Some people binge eat when they’re stressed. 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. Don’t let stress have a stranglehold on your life, try exercise or meditation, and find time to chill out.
12. Exercise. The benefits of exercise are endless, not just for your body but for your mind and spirit as well. Be it muscle gain, fat loss, cardio respiratory health or performance or just that feel good healthy feeling. It stimulants the happy hormones in your brain and system like serotonin responsible for regulating our moods, dopamine which helps with mental alertness and clarity and endorphins which reduce anxiety. Exercise is generally the first thing that any therapists or psychiatrists will try to encourage you to do for these reasons.
So I hope you have found these 12 holiday tips helpful, if you are interested in working with a trainer (hint hint) who can build you a personalized training plan incorporating all of the above tailored to your specific goals please give me a call.
EXCLUSIVELY FOR BRITS IN LA offering 40% discounts for January. The next blog is going to be about winning the battle of the bulge and shifting any excess holiday weight. Until then train hard, train smart, eat clean and get lean. For more information on personal training feel free to contact me on Tel 310 279 8117, email Body Possible or visit Body Possible Website