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Health. Weight. And Holidays.

With Thanksgiving gone and December before us, I decided this is the ideal time to revisit my “Top 50 Ways to Stay Healthy During the Holidays (and Not Gain Weight).” You can be intentional with your health and weight, and still enjoy the holidays. If you’re already feeling like you’ve blown it or that you’ll wait until the New Year to think about it, then this post is really for you!

  1. Don’t make NY resolutions – it’s too easy to let yourself off the hook now.
  2. If you use the “back burner” at least have it turned on (no all-or-nothing).
  3. Prepare for the expected – it shouldn’t take you by surprise.
  4. Learn from prior years – what would you do differently this year?
  5. Plan for parties – what will you eat/drink, or not?
  6. Don’t “save up” calories – skipping meals leads to a pig out.
  7. Set your standard (e.g. # of parties, networking events, etc.).
  8. Walk 15.5 miles this month (that’s 10 minutes/day at a 3mph pace).
  9. Month of gratitude.
  10. Ferociously prioritize.
  11. No “shoulds” – you don’t have to accept every invitation.
  12. Be conscious – food simply being “there” isn’t a reason to eat it.
  13. Be picky – not all treats are worth it. Eat only the best.
  14. Honor your curfew – remember how you feel when you don’t get enough sleep.
  15. Savor holiday treats – and please don’t feel guilty.
  16. Photo by Thought Catalog on Unsplash
  17. Be realistic – you’re only human 🙂
  18. Avoid drama – craft a graceful response to remove yourself from these situations.
  19. Go ice skating – seriously, how fun!
  20. Space out adult beverages with water.
  21. Be kind to yourself – you’re doing the best you can and so is everyone else.
  22. Maintain regular sleep times.
  23. Identify what’s most important…and don’t let it get overshadowed by the ubiquity of shiny objects this time of year.
  24. Decide what healthy looks like for you.
  25. If it’s going to be cold have appropriate outerwear on hand (eliminating that excuse) so that you can exercise and keep active.
  26. Get in the good stuff – eat it first so you don’t fill up on what’s not that great.
  27. People over food – remember gatherings are for connecting; let food be secondary.
  28. Go e-free during holiday get togethers.
  29. Don’t get hooked – others need not get you riled up.
  30. Be intentional so that your words and actions serve your priorities.
  31. Don’t lament over last night’s buffet – forgive yourself and move on.
  32. Decide how you want to feel Jan. 1 – and let that drive what you do the rest of Dec.
  33. Imagine how it feels to be in integrity – to do what you say is important to you.
  34. Take time out for yourself – it’s the only way you can fully be there for others.
  35. You don’t have to “get it out of the house.” A box of, say, See’s Candies can last into early next year – you don’t need to eat it all before Jan. 1.
  36. Caught in traffic? Breathe deeply to de-stress and focus on what’s good.
  37. Find new, healthy favorites – ever tried mashed cauliflower instead of potatoes (or a blend of the two)?
  38. Move in the morning – start your day with some bit of exercise/activity.
  39. Cheesy movie night – something that makes you smile (or happy cry).
  40. Listen to music you enjoy, and move to it.
  41. Don’t deprive – fit in your favorites to avoid Diet Deprivation Backlash.
  42. Send party food home with your guests.
  43. Take in the sunshine – it stimulates feel-good serotonin.
  44. Feeling sick? Stay home! Everyone will be glad you did.
  45. Hydrate.
  46. Eat to sufficiency – more is really not enjoyable and it starts a downward spiral.
  47. Eat when you’re hungry – being too hungry leads to over-eating.
  48. Bring a healthy potluck option – you’ll have at least one healthy choice to rely on (some people will even thank you for it).
  49. Re-gift calories – take gifts of holiday treats to a shelter or a neighbor in need.
  50. Re-think traditions – what would an enjoyable, healthy one look like?
  51. Freeze it – you’ll be happy to have a holiday treat to thaw out in January.

Trust me, it’s possible. Your effort now will pay off as the calendar turns to 2019 and you feel healthy and strong, and delighted with how you handled the holidays.

Sound easier than it feels? I can help. Let’s chat!



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