Good morning I’m in Florida, hopefully lounging on the beach with a good book (and cocktail?) in my hands. My client lent me this book a couple of weeks ago, and I’m hoping with two 5-hour plane rides and some beach time, it will quite literally be my beach read:
It’s always kind of sad the couple days after Christmas. Winter in general kind of bums me out, but Shane keep reminding me that there’s till New Year’s, and then a whole season of skiing to look forward, too.
Anyway, now that Christmas has come and gone, with New Year’s right around the corner, the holidays are almost done. While the holidays bring joy, family, gifts, and warmth, they can also bring something a little less…desirable – holiday weight gain.
I promise that this isn’t going to be one of those cliché posts that talks about how to avoid holiday weight gain. As I write that sentence, I’m sure every single one of you reading can recite one tip that’s been regurgitated over and over in fitness magazines, that makes it seem easy as Christmas pie to resist all temptations from Thanksgiving to New Years.
I like to be real with my friends, and that’s what I consider you guys – a big group of friends Each year, when this season rolls around, I tell my clients (many of whom are also friends) the same thing:
“please, please don’t put pressure on yourself to drop pounds this month. We can go back to losing body fat after Christmas, but this month, please don’t be disappointed if the scale doesn’t keep going down.”
In fact, I think it’s a victory if the scale doesn’t go up. And if it does go up a few pounds, it’s OK. Our eating habits should normalize come January, and those few pounds (which are likely partly water weight) will slide right off along with it.
Although I make it a point not to step on the scale on a regular basis at all, a few weeks ago, I became concerned because my period was late (and no, I’m not pregnant.) Hmmm, I thought. Have I lost weight and not even realized it? Although my pants fit no differently, I stepped on the scale only to realize the opposite had happened – I had gained 5 pounds! (A couple days later, I got my period, and blame the lateness on some stress and a funk I was going through in November.)
Now, I always gain about 5 pounds from Thanksgiving to New Year’s, every year. But I have to admit, seeing the scale 5 ok 6 pounds higher than the last time I stepped on it, gave me a bit of a fright. It was only the beginning of December, and I had already gained my usual holiday weight gain?! While I’m definitely OK with gaining a few pounds around this time of year, I am trying to avoid the Christmas cookies a tad bit more, so that 5 pounds doesn’t turn into 10.
But that’s not my point. My point is that holiday weight gain happens. And it’s OK – as long as we’re not going crazy and choosing to indulge in every.single.goodie that passes us by
So, instead of making a list of how to lose weight during the holiday, my list today, is how to be OK with a little holiday weight gain.
1. Move more efficiently. Not to burn more calories, but to feel good in your own skin. Often times, during the holidays, we are limited on time. You might not have a complete hour to get in your workout, but you do have 20-30 minutes. Move more efficiently with some time-saving workout techniques, or skip the commute time by working out at home.
2. Indulge wisely. Consider this scenario: you’re at a Christmas party, and there’s counters and counters full of goodies – cheese plates, pastries, cookies, egg nog, and other high calorie-laden snacks. All of the sudden, the nights almost over, and you feel…miserable. Everything at those counters ended up on your plate, and you leave feeling pretty damn crappy. I’ve been there, too. What’s a good indulgence if we eat them mindlessly, and can’t even enjoy it at the end? Choose a few things you really love, and enjoy them. Then, please, please, please don’t feel bad about it afterward.
3. Indulge with loved ones. It’s a reality that we humans bond over food and drink. To me, a glass of wine is only more flavorful when enjoyed with a couple of good girlfriends. Christmas cookies are that much sweeter when shared with family. Shane and I love decorating the tree while drinking – and completely enjoying – egg nog.
4. Forgive yourself and have compassion for your body. Instead of harping over those few pounds, think about the three things above, and how much you enjoyed indulging, and how it only comes once a year. Give yourself grace, and realize that a few pounds isn’t a big deal in the least.
What are your thoughts on holiday weight gain?