I was in the store recently talking to a friend and she said, "I just need to get through the holidays and THEN I will go back to Weight Watchers." Do you know how much weight the average person gains between this week and the first of January? No? Me either. HA! No, seriously I've read different numbers, but many gain anywhere from 5-10 lbs over the holidays. Don't let this happen to you. At the very least you should be able to maintain your weight.
Last year I lost about 7 lbs over the holidays. It CAN be done. This year I would be absolutely thrilled with that amount of weight loss but as I am nearing my goal weight it's much more slow going.
Here are some tips for losing weight (or maintaining):
1. Don't wait until January 1st. Don't even wait until tomorrow. Start with the next meal. Make healthy choices. If you are someone like me and have portion control issues....write down what you eat...count something...calories or points or whatever.
2. Every event does not have to be an eating event. If it's not a sit down meal, no one will even notice that you aren't eating. Either eat before you go and don't eat at the event at all OR eat a bowl of soup or something else light so you are not ravenous and will make better choices. If you know ahead of time what will be on the menu think through exactly what you want to eat.
3. Choose ahead of time WHICH events will be eating events. You don't have to skip the goodies you love on Thanksgiving or Christmas. PLAN and DECIDE ahead of time what things you love and would feel completely deprived of if you didn't have. Have some and move on.
4. If you eat more than you intended to....see #1. Don't let this derail you. Start again right away.
5. Make the time to exercise. It doesn't have to be every day but wear a pedometer, do some extra walking, run, pop in an exercise DVD. It doesn't take that long and you will be glad you did. (This one is for me! I needed a little pep talk!)
6. Have a meal plan. You don't have to stick to it 100%, but have some guidelines. It's much easier to stay the course if you have a course set out!
7. Don't waste calories (or points) on beverages. I don't drink alcohol, so that is not even something I think about, but there are plenty of other calorie laden beverages this time of year...eggnog, hot chocolate, mulled cider, punch, soda etc. If it's a once a year treat and part of the list of things you decide you have to have, then have ONE. Calories in beverages can add up quickly so be careful of that.
8. Don't skip meals. If you know you are going to an evening event don't skip lunch and/or breakfast to save calories. That never works.
9. Find healthy, yet good tasting foods to replace those that are too caloric. If your family balks then just add an extra dish or two just for you! For instance, I am planning to make Sweet Potato Casserole from Dashing Dish and a Sweet Bacon Green Beans from Keep Crockin'.(review and giveaway on this fantastic book coming SOON!) I may end up being the only one eating these (though I doubt it) but, I'll be happy and more likely to stay on track with some dishes just for me.
10. Enjoy celebrations without guilt. This may sound contrary to the other tips but it really isn't. With a little planning ahead and good decision making you will be well on your way to starting the new year off without regrets.