As mentioned in our previous article, gaining some weight during holidays it is common but this can compromise our health and make more difficult to go back on track later on. The former article focused on creating a pre-holidays nutrition mind set, the most important first step to this challenge. This article will tackle a few remaining adjustments aiming to succeed in our maintenance or weight loss goals during this coming holiday season.
It is easy to put exercise behind when we are more busy socializing during holiday. But being regularly active is important for at least 50 reasons, such as: weight management, reduced risk of cardiovascular disease, decreasing stress, memory and mental health improvement, boosting immune system, and increasing lifespan, etc. etc. Here are a few activity tips:
- Stick to your normal workout routine as much as possible, even during the holidays. If you are not exercising regularly, much better if do not wait until after the New Year to get started. If you are the kind of person who think that do not have time to work out, better change your mind set about it. Note: hard workout sessions are great not really necessary
- Try to add up more activity into your daily routine: for example: park your car farther away from your destination, or much better if you take a walk instead; take the stairs instead of the elevator; read the newspaper while standing up (instead of sitting comfortable burning "zero" calories); or do a 10-minutes calisthenic session any time during the day. Believe me, every little calorie burning counts!
- Lose as you go. If unexpectedly happens that you have over-eaten one day, make a conscious decision to get more steps or extra workout during the same day or day after so that you burn off those unwanted calories as soon as possible
- Invite your friends or family members. Research suggests that we human perform better on aerobic tasks like running and cycling when exercising with a partner. So if you are home during this holiday season, go ahead, call up a friend or family member for a gym date, a home workout or a brisk walk session. It might certainly help you both.
Be strong, say no!!
Though someone may encourage to overeat by provoking you with a "delicious meal", it is ok if you respectfully decline. A simple “Sorry! I am full” or “I am taking a break for a while” should be enough for friends and family members to back off while it gives you the time to decide if you really want to eat more or not. Note: taking a few minutes break will typically satiate you. It takes about 7 minutes in average for the brain to get the message that a meal have been served, so better to go for a walk or chat with friends and give yourself time to feel full.
When we are busy, our sleeping time is often the first thing we use to cut back. But skipping sleep not only make us feel tired and exhausted, but it actually disrupts our inner hormones production, which in turn can affect our appetite and end up affecting our weight. So aim for at least 7-8 hours of healthy sleeping every night. Note: Setting an alarm on our phone to remind us the time to get ready to bed might help and better turn off all the electronic devices, or set them to flight or night mode, so that the light and pop-up messages do not keep you awake.
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