It is really easy at this time of year to let things go. You spend all year trying to workout more, watch what you eat and lose fat and then you just think “blow it” when it comes to late November and the beginning of Christmas. Before you know it, January will have hit you full in the face and you will be wondering
Just how did I let it become this bad?
So, with Christmas fast approaching I thought it would be best to impart my little pearls of winter wisdom with you all.
I hope you find the following 10 tips helpful. I recently went through them in a FITBOX LIVE broadcast so if you would rather listen to them (I’m sure in my very own rambling fashion) you can click this here.
My Top 10 Christmas Survival Tips
- The use of flexible dieting – this term can sometimes be seen as something that shouldn’t be done or be avoided at all costs. The truth is this, once we get down to brass tacks, fat loss, maintenance and fat gain is all about calories. The more you eat, the more fat you will gain, or you will have to do a load more exercise to burn them off. With flexible dieting you can identify those times when you will consume more calories and so eat less either before or afterwards; balancing the scales.
- Eating protein at every meal – protein is really important for the body. Not only are our muscles and a lot of our connective tissue built from it, a bonus result is that it when you eat it, it makes you feel fuller for longer. No mean feat when you have all those Christmas meals to think about.
- Eat slowly – doing this allows the body to tell you when it is full and doesn’t need any more food. When you have eaten enough food, the body releases a hormone called Leptin. This then tells the brain that you have had enough and you stop eating. The issue here is that this process takes 20 minutes. If you, like me, shovel your food in quickly, the body doesn’t get a chance to stop you from over-eating.
- Get smaller plates – It’s been proven that if you eat off smaller plates you will eat less. I mean there is only so much turkey you can pile on a side plate. Also, think about eating off darker coloured plates. It’s also been proven that this reduces the amount we put on our plates as portions appear larger then they are. It’s magic!
- Take a breath before seconds – take time out and let your first portion go down. This allows the body to catch up. See point 3!
- Drink water – with your meal. This helps to fill you up, eat more slowly, rehydrates you and aids digestion. I mean, talk about a super food! Or liquid in this case.
- Freeze leftovers – Tub them straight up and shove them in the freezer. Don’t leave them lying about the fridge. They are just begging to be munched down. Come on, do yourself a favour!
- Use tall, thin glasses – when drinking all kinds of alcohol. It’s the case that folks that drink out of Champaign flutes don’t drink as much. Even if you are drinking beer, you tend to fill it up less often. Give it a try.
- Alcohol makes you cave – into your cravings. We have all been there. Half past two in the morning in the queue for the kebab shop (I’m sure I have a photo of me around here somewhere) after a couple of drinks down the local. However, it’s not only during the evening you drink you are likely to cave to your cravings but also the day after. All the body wants is calorific food that is normally processed and full of sugar and salt.
- Enjoy yourself – Let’s not forget, it’s Christmas and you have worked blinking hard all year. You are going to be bombarded by fitness companies trying to make you feel guilty so that they can grab your business in the new year. My advice is this. Own your decisions. What I mean by this is if you decide to eat a mince pie, then enjoy the mince pie. Don’t eat it and feel guilty about it for the next three hours.
So, there you have it. My top ten tips that I hope will get you through the next couple of week relatively unscathed.
Have you got any tips of your own that you use to get you through the holidays? If you do, post them below so we can all benefit from them!
This was first published on Fitbox Blog in December 2017