For many people who are working towards and major weight loss goal, the run up to Christmas can be a time filled with anxiety. As you prepare yourself for the inevitable Christmas weight gain, the stress can be hard to handle. Although a time filled with fun and festivity, (and the odd family row) it can be incredibly stressful for those trying to maintain their goals. However, although it may feel like you are fighting a losing battle, there are a few things you can do to stay slim this Christmas.
So you are really proud of yourself for the weight you’ve lost so far. You’ve watched those calories, hit the gym and took the right supplements. But as we creep closer to Christmas you are starting to feel like it will all inevitably go out of the window! With sweet mince pies and mulled wine everywhere in sight, even maintaining the weight you’ve already lost seems like an impossible feat this festive season.
But, there are a few surefire ways you can keep from piling on the pounds this winter. Following these steps can help you to stay slim this Christmas, meaning you can ask Santa for a whole new wardrobe! I mean come on, you’ve been good this year, you deserve it!
#1 STAY AWAY FROM LIQUID CALORIES!
This is not only the first but probably the most important rule for staying slim this Christmas is to avoid liquid calories like the plague! Most people don’t realise that this is the number one reason people put on weight at Christmas time (okay, the turkey dinner doesn’t help).
The fact is there is SO much sugar and calories in fizzy soda drinks. There is also a lot of calories in alcohol. This is the time most people who wouldn’t normally drink either to excess the rest of the year, do. I mean let’s fact it, it is all so easy. Everyone wants to celebrate, so anyone’s house you go to the wine and the beers are there ready. Plus, there is the work Christmas party to go to! All of which are brimming with wines and spirits with fizzy mixers!
The problem is that not only do most people not actually realise the amount of calories in these drinks to start with, but once they start flowing, they forget how many they have even had. So, without going overboard on food you can still easily pile on the pounds.
A 16oz bottle of coke is 184 calories
1 small glass of wine is 124 calories
1 pint of beer is 154 calories
A single glass of mulled wine is 227 calories
It is more than easy to have at least one of each of these drinks at the house of a friend or family member during the Christmas period. Just by having one of each of these drinks will mean you have consumed almost 700 calories and that is before having any food!
Personally, I don’t drink alcohol at all, however, I am not saying this is the way to go for everyone this Christmas! If you don’t want to miss out on the fun, make smart choices. So, make your wine a low calorie version or stick with tonic as a mixer for your spirits, even if it means bringing your own. This way you can enjoy with everyone else and you won’t really notice you’re sacrificing.
#2 DON’T GO OUT HUNGRY
So, most of the festive period is spent visiting friends and family and of course everywhere you go has tables filled with treats. Mixed nuts, crisps, mince pies! All far too easy to just pop into your mouth time and time again. This is exactly what will happen if you visit people hungry!
So the best way to avoid this is to fill up before you leave the house. Fair enough, if you have made plans to get together for a sit down meal probably don’t have another meal before hand, but with the knowledge that unhealthy snacks are likely to be everywhere, filling up on bulky but skinny foods before you go out will help you beat temptation.
Try and stick to meals filled with protein, fruits and vegetables to feel fuller for longer while not consuming huge amounts of calories.
#3 ALLOW YOURSELF THE ULTIMATE CHEAT DAY
Cheat days are incredibly important to weight loss. A lot of people start out with great weight loss numbers and then they start to tail off. This is because a number of hormones in your body are affected by how many calories you consume. If you start to consume fewer calories regularly, these hormones tell your body that there is a famine, and you need to slow down the rate you burn fat in order to survive it!
So, by having one day that you get a large amount of calories, kick starts your dieting. Many people think that a cheat day is counter productive, but the fact is one day of bad eating won’t make a difference, just like one day of good eating won’t make a difference! It is what you do long term that counts.
So when it comes to Christmas day and the big man in red has been and gone, allow yourself to indulge! Have the extra slices of turkey and a few balls of stuffing. Have the chocolates granny Jean bought you and enjoy a few glasses of prosecco with your bestie. Be strict with yourself every day except this day. Let this be your ultimate cheat day!
Because I promise you, if you try to restrict yourself on Christmas day you will regret it and you will start to binge in the days after. So have the big day. Binge. Overindulge. Make yourself sick on shortbread so that all of your cravings are well and truly satisfied moving forward. Then you can stick to leftover turkey salad until New Year!