It’s the season of cozying up, skipping the usual diets, and usually not being able to get out of the blanket to do any of the boring chores – let alone fitness activities. Cooked food is taken over by takeouts and healthy smoothies are replaced with hot chocolate rather promptly thanks to the weather outside. It can be challenging to even make way to your closest gym if you live in areas with heavy snowfall.
Added to the weather, it is also the season of celebrations. This includes everything from big dinners to a line of desserts and drinks to celebrate the very many occasions that are lined up. And as lockdowns continue to get lifted, the wedding season will also be ready to welcome everyone with open arms. But the commonality between all of this remains the supremely rich food that will be waiting for you at every table and corner, making ‘weight gain’ almost a reality of life.
However, you could be sneaky with your ways when it comes to this. And here’s how.
Save yourself from the calories: It is no secret that you will be surrounded by calories during the holiday season. The first thing you can try out to curb the calorie limit is to be mindful of the number of desserts you eat. White processed sugar can lead to extreme weight gain and most desserts are created out of just that. While watching your desserts can help, it is also important not to go for seconds whenever possible. It can be tempting to see the best food laid out for you but it’s best to save yourself the second round to avoid unnecessary calories going into your system. Likewise, if you’re hosting any events, you might also want to distance yourself from the leftovers. By consuming leftovers, you not only add to your calorie count but also slowly increase your diet which doesn’t help if you’re planning to shed a few kilos.
Manage your timings: The first aspect of daily life that takes a toll in this season is your sleep cycle. This could be either due to you trying to grab extra hours of coziness or keeping up late at night with family and friends. Staying up at ungodly hours not only has adverse health effects but also makes you hungry at all the wrong times. This means you will reach out for unhealthy food to munch on in the middle of the night and in turn, possibly mess up your food cycle too. Try to keep track of at least three healthy meals a day so you’re less likely to feel hungry. One of the massive benefits you are likely to get from sleeping on time is to wake up on time for breakfast which will curb the chances of you overeating your way through the rest of the day. Grab yourself a fitness tracking device or use your smartphone for keeping a check on your bedtime hours for extra help.
Squeeze time for movement: This can be tricky if you’ve got preps for big events lined up. However, it is important to find some time to keep moving – either in a form of a proper healthy exercise or just walking in between meals. If walking or running seem like plausible options, keep a pair of running shoes handy during weddings or events so you can grab them every chance you get to keep your system active.
Home-cooked over takeaways: Takeout food and meals from outside are likely to have excessive oil and calories in them. Freshly prepared home-cooked meals are definitely the better bet in a situation like this. You can use healthy ingredients either from your home garden or from your local grocery to ensure you cook less unhealthy choices and have better meals.
Don’t forget the fruits: Amidst all the fried chicken and alcohol, fruits usually take a backseat and that’s not the best move. It’s worth adding in some time every day for just fruit consumption. Fruits come with abundant advantages that derive from the fiber, water, and natural sugars in them. We could all use a little hydration during the winter months and fruits help with that. Likewise, the holiday season might get chaotic and lead to a lot of skipped meals, that’s when eating fruits as healthy snacks can work out better. They help in keeping your stomach full and preventing you from reaching out for calorie-filled food to fill you up.
Check the calendar: If you’re lucky, fitness events might be regular where you live. If you’re planning a road trip or mini travels, check out the event calendars of that place to see if there are any activities going on that you could sign up for. This will help you build a routine around the event and force you to stay in shape if and when you get lazy.
While it is important to keep an eye on how much you might be consuming every day, it’s still important to enjoy the season with your loved ones. Try to come up with a system that works best for you and is helpful for you throughout the upcoming season as opposed to just a couple of events.