Weight gain over the holidays is and has always been the norm. The holiday weight gain starts with all of the candy for Halloween, continues with the juicy turkey and cranberry sauce for Thanksgiving, and finishes with the decadently rich Christmas and New Year meals.
Therefore, you wake up one day in early January, noticing things that weren’t there in October.
But, is cutting weight during holidays possible?
To help you maintain your weight and reduce it if you get carried away with the holiday spirit, in the following paragraphs, I will give you some tips on cutting the holiday weight and not gaining as much in the first place.
Tips for Cutting Weight During Holidays
It can be very frustrating to work out all year round, watching what you eat and maintaining a decent level of self-discipline, only to find yourself back at the beginning somewhere in January.
People who don’t work out regularly and indulge themselves with food have it easy during the holidays, as their bodies are used to that kind of food. Therefore, they might even avoid gaining weight as they process the food quickly.
On the other hand, if you work out regularly, you might not only have trouble digesting all that food but also gain weight due to the sudden nutrition change.
Therefore, since you opt for healthier nutrition choices throughout the year, your body doesn’t care if it’s Christmas; it will expand if you aren’t careful.
So, to help you enjoy your holidays with as little worry as possible, below are some tips on cutting weight during holidays.
Include More Protein
The holiday season is known for its meaty and cheesy delicacies, so proteins are abundant during this time; even eggnog has them. For example, one serving of eggnog has about 8 grams of protein.
Instead of consuming sugar, choose the same food with more protein. So, instead of Gingerbread men, have a piece of cheesecake. Instead of fries, have baked pumpkin sticks.
You can easily turn every category of holiday food into a meal you can have without gaining weight or gaining as little as possible.
Drink Lots of Water
As worn out as this tip may seem to you, don’t forget to drink lots of water. It is easy to stay hydrated before the holidays while you are actively in your workout groove. However, the holidays are a very social period, where you meet old buddies and family members you haven’t seen in a while.
With all that eating and talking, it is easier to reach for another piece of food than the second glass of water. Therefore hydrating doesn’t come so naturally during the holidays as it does during the rest of the year. That’s why you must consciously and intentionally stay hydrated during this period.
Pay Attention to Timing
With the nine-to-five lifestyle, you rarely have the opportunity to socialize during the day, especially in the winter when the day is shorter. Even if you don’t work nine to five, the people you are seeing are, so it is more likely to have holiday social gatherings in the evening.
Eating and then going to bed is the killer of your athletic figure you worked so hard to get and maintain, so you need to adjust the timing of your last meal for the day. It would be best if you insisted on leaving a three-hour window from your last meal of the day and going to bed.
Since other people are involved in your holiday festivities, and you may not always have it your way with food and timing, it is a great idea to have a contingency plan.
When you eat too much or eat too close to bedtime, do some damage control with chia seeds. Chia seeds do wonders for your body on so many levels, but they are most famous for their detoxing abilities.
So, before going to bed or early in the morning, have a chia pudding. It will battle the fats and carbs you had, making it easier for your body to process them. It won’t, however, turn back time and erase all the food you ate, but it will reduce the damage to a great extent.
Keep Working Out
The holidays are a magical time of the year when everyone gets softer; you may get to a point where you decide to skip today’s workout because it’s Christmas, and you deserve it. And yes, we all deserve that break, but indulge yourself in another way, as one skipped workout session can easily turn into a few, several, and ultimately many.
It is so hard to get back on the horse with a belly full of jelly, so you shouldn’t get off of it at all. Reduce your workout time or intensity, but the holiday season is when you must keep going to cut your holiday weight or not gain any.
Avoid Empty Calories From Holiday Food
Empty calories are calories that make you gain weight but don’t have any nutritional value. You get such calories from bread, sweets, fries, chips, fast food, candy, soft drinks, and the like. So, the holidays are a breeding ground for empty calories.
The problem is, no matter how poor empty calorie foods are, they taste heavenly, so it is easy to get carried away. Therefore, you need to buckle up and resist the temptation. Is cutting weight during holidays possible with such amazing calorie-dense food available? Yes.
Instead of regular white bread, opt for wholegrain, replace the sweets with fruit cups, and substitute the chips and snacks for a healthier option, such as seeds.
Is Holiday Weight Gain Temporary?
Holiday weight gain can be temporary, but it can also stick with you, depending on how you behave before and after the holidays. You will soon cut those few holiday pounds with regular workout sessions and good nutrition choices.
If you don’t get back to your regular non-holiday routine, the holiday weight will persist and maybe increase.
Read More: How to Lose Weight and Transform Your Body