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Holiday Haters: Show the season for overeating who’s boss

Jessica Mefferd -- 12/20/2011 05:15 AM

It’s the most bellyful time of the year.

11 AM: Lunch at Aunt Rhonda’s
3 PM: Dinner at Grandma’s
7 PM: Work Holiday Party
10 PM: Ugly Holiday Sweater Party

One too many sugar cookies…no time to work out. A busy schedule and an abundance of holiday food we hate to love makes it almost impossible to stay on top of your health game during the holidays. Here are some tips to stay healthy during the holidays and avoid looking like Santa Claus by the time you ring in 2012.

Pencil in your workouts.
When your schedule is full with holiday parties and events, it seems impossible to squeeze in a workout. Truth is, you won’t ever find time to workout—you need to make time. Schedule your workouts like you schedule your parties. Pencil in a sweat sesh first thing in the morning for the most effective burn. Working out in the morning will boost your metabolism for the rest of the day (let’s face it, you can’t pass up all holiday desserts) and put you in a good mood so you can actually have a genuine “happy face” when you mingle with your long, lost, over-talkative relatives.

Strategize.
It’s easy to find yourself hovering over the snack table the entire party. Grazing on fatty bites can quickly rack up thousands of calories before dinner…and dessert. Set yourself up for success with these party strategies.

  • 1. Never come hungry. Have a healthy filling snack (like raw almonds) right before you come to a party so you don’t go straight to the food.
  • 2. Stay on the move. Instead of waiting for people to come to you (and the onion dip), step away from the food and walk around to have a conversation with everyone at the party. This will limit your pre-dinner grazing and let you catch up with friends and family.
  • 3. Guzzle down. Drink water before and during the party. This will keep you hydrated and full so you eat less during the feast.
  • 4. Indulge wisely. If you only get to have grandma’s pumpkin pie once a year, enjoy it! Don’t waste extra calories on common high-calorie foods like bread and butter and sugary drinks.

Watch, Play, Burn.
Christmas Day marks the 2011-2012 NBA season opener…finally. With Heat vs. Mavericks and Lakers vs. Bulls, we’ll be glued to the TV all afternoon. During halftime, instead of going for more pumpkin roll, get off the couch and onto the court. Have a quick shoot-out against your brother, teach your younger cousin how to do a layup, or challenge your pops to some one-on-one. Quality time ballin’ with your family is a fun way to burn some calories and make some unforgettable holiday memories.

 

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