Did you know that more than half the weight an average person gains in a year is put on during the 6 weeks from Thanksgiving to New Years? And those who are already overweight tend to gain the most.
It’s hard to ignore the over abundance of edible temptations during the holiday season. The problem is the accumulation of temptations. It’s not a one time indulgence contained by a few days of restraint. It’s a continuous bombardment of sweets, appetizers, finger foods, alcohol, and other high carb energy dense food.
The best way to keep your weight in check during “The Most Edible Time of the Year” is to make a plan for yourself, and vow to stick with it. Think of it as a pre-season gift to yourself. You are a wonderful person and you deserve to be at the weight that makes you feel great. Give yourself a plan for dieting during the holidays that will help you move in the right direction.
Write out your plan for dieting during the holidays right now. Include the goal – whether you want to lose weight, maintain your current weight, or keep weight gain under a certain number. Identify obstacles you will face during the season and ways in which you intend to overcome them. Write down strategies you will use to prevent these obstacle from thwarting your intended goal. Sign your plan – make it a contract with yourself.
Read this contract each morning to reset your intentions for the day. Read it again at night and congratulate yourself for the ways in which you followed your plan. Review anything that went wrong and decide how you plan to handle the situation the next time it arises.
Decide before you go to a holiday event, how you plan to handle yourself. Are you going to eat gingerly but taste everything? If that’s the strategy, make sure you keep track of what you put in your mouth. These “tastes” can add up quickly. Savor each small taste, but once you’ve had your taste, move on – no seconds.
Or maybe your strategy will be to “just say no” to all of a particular type of food. Have some dinner, but “just say no” to anything with sugar or white flour. Or just say no to dessert.
If you like to drink to “be merry” at holiday events, limit it to one or, at the most, two drinks. Any more than that and you will lose the ability to stick to your plan for controlled eating. Remind yourself that you have “NO CHOICE” if you want to maintain your weight. If you drink and eat to abandon, you can’t have a body you feel great about. You can’t have both.
So what’s your plan for dieting during the holidays? Make a contract with yourself and then stick to it. You will feel great when you stick to your plan and achieve the holiday outcome you want. That’s the best Holiday Gift of all.