Holiday Health Tips – 2013

It’s that time of the year again:  Holiday Health Tips

My update for 2013 is that we have extended our holiday festivities for over a week.  I’ll be doing a bunch of running in single digit weather to keep the lbs. off and to stay fit.  It is also a great way take a break from the rush of things and regroup, especially for those needed that alone time to recharge.  Starting Saturday, I’ve ran over 4 hrs. and hope to keep up the focus with some indoor cycling and gym work tomorrow.

With Halloween, Thanksgiving, and Christmas all coming along in the fall, it is a great time to add 5-10 pounds that we all have been working so hard to hold off.   Rather than counting calories and ruining your holidays by worrying about calories instead of enjoying the season, I have a simple list to keep the weight off.  (Or at least manageable)

  1. Don’t make a 1 day holiday into a 4 day holiday.  It is pretty easy to end up having Thanksgiving 4 times in November.  There can be two family gatherings, your company party, friends parties, your spouses parties, etc.   I suggest choosing one event to let loose on and then treat the other events like you would a typical day.  Overeating can become a snowball gaining momentum after the 3rd party and you eventually just give up the fight.
  2. Drink water.  I have talked about this a lot, so it is no surprise to end up here.  Drink a bunch of water before any event and then drink a bunch during the event.   It will keep you hydrated (obviously), counteract alcohol consumption, and prevent major overeating.
  3.  Minimize sugar.  I have talked a lot about this in the past as well.  Focus on eating the greens, meats, and fruit dishes and try to keep away from the candy based items.
  4. Minimize liquid calories.  It is easy to double your calorie intake at an event by drinking just as many calories as you eat.  The body doesn’t register liquid calories the same way as solids and they simply won’t make you feel full.  Alcohol can fall into this category.  A beer can have 100-200 calories per 12 oz and hard liquor shot is about the same.  Also keep in mind that these both have a lot of sugar in them.
  5. Burn the calories.  I have a tradition of running a ½ marathon the morning of Thanksgiving every year.  I don’t train for it and it is pretty painful, but it does create a pretty guilt free day after burning 1800 calories in the morning.   Even getting in family football game can be a good way to burn a few of those servings of bean casserole.

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