Want to eat all your favorite holiday treats and NOT gain weight? Here’s the simple secret that allows you to do just that. It’s the #1 thing to minimize holiday weight gain while still enjoying holiday food. Because … let’s be honest, we’re all going to eat the goodies and we’ve all eaten way too much. We’ve all done it and we all hate doing it.
Maybe it’s your mom’s sweet potato soufflé – maybe it’s your wife’s pecan pie – maybe it’s your grandma’s dressing – or maybe it’s just the special occasion and a “let the good food flow” mentality. Regardless of what causes it, we all hate eating ourselves into a button-popping, indigestion-filled, why did I eat so much stupor. Now is not the time to start a special diet or swear off sweets, so here is exactly what Ally and I use (and what I recommend to my clients) to minimize the holiday damage.
Two simple words, but oh-so-powerful . . . if you actually do it.
Here comes the holiday party or family gathering and in no time, we’re transformed into the Christmas version of the Walking Dead, or what I like to call the “eating zombie.” Mix together butter, sugar, loads of starches, alcohol (for some), with a social setting and you’ve got the perfect recipe for mindlessly scarfing down a ton of high calorie food, without savoring or enjoying one bit of it. The solution is simple, but you have to put in a little extra thought.
Decide ahead of time that you will practice mindful eating. Here’s a simple 4-step process to eat all your favorite foods, enjoy them more than ever, and NOT gain weight like a newborn baby.
Step 1: Choose Wisely
Don’t just put everything on your plate simply because it’s there. Understand that your body has a Wellness Bank. You can eat anything you want, but . . . did you want that particular food, then and there? It’s like buying something at the store – is it worth the cost? Everything we eat either puts money in our Wellness Bank or costs us something. You’re in complete control of your choices, so it’s a simple question – is this food worth the cost? Sometimes the answer is a resounding YES! Other times – Nah, not really, so I’ll pass.
Step 2: Slow down
Don’t jump into the feeding frenzy like a rabid animal. Before you know it, your plate is empty and you don’t remember a thing. Nothing sucks quite as bad as a belly full of calories that you didn’t get to enjoy!ThinkFood 99% of us eat way too fast and truly don’t take time to enjoy our food. You’ve been waiting for this. Slow down, make it last.
Step 3: Think
Along with slowing down, think about what you’re doing. Don’t just shovel food in your mouth mindlessly. Think about your foods, experience the flavors, chew, chew, chew, chew some more, and delay swallowing until you’ve soaked up every bit of deliciousness! How much should you chew? Glad you asked. Many nutrition experts recommend chewing the alphabet. Yes, 26 chews per mouthful of food! Strive for 15-20 and I’ll be impressed.
Step 4: Go Guilt-free
Guilt is for the guilty, not for you. You shouldn’t feel guilty about enjoying decadent “cheat” foods as long as it’s part of a well balanced nutritional year. As I often tell people – if your birthday, Thanksgiving and Christmas mess you up, then there must be something wrong with the rest of your year. It’s the other 360ish days you need to clean up! Delicious non-nutritious food is not evil; your relationship to it can be. There’s absolutely nothing wrong with occasionally enjoying your favorite cheat foods. Problems arise when you enjoy them a little too often.
Here’s a great quote from Dr. John Berardi on mindful eating . . .
“The goal is to have a seat, slow down, turn off the TV, eliminate distractions. Once you’ve slowed your pace: take smaller bites, chew the food completely and taste it. Possibly even put your fork down after every few bites; have a drink; chat with friends or family. The idea here is to take one’s time and really experience the process of eating. Interestingly, when we slow down in this way, we tend to eat fewer calories with each meal and enjoy our food more!”
If we’re honest, most of us wind up feeling bloated and miserable, dreading stepping on the scales once the holidays are over. Why not make this year different? Why not implement the simple steps I’ve outlined? You just might be amazed at how much more you enjoy your food and how much less weight you gain. That’s a big win in my book.
Here’s your insider tip!!
In no time, the holidays will be over and the “gotta get into shape” resolutions will be in full swing. Please don’t fall for the typical lose 20lbs in 20 days hype. If you really want to lose weight, get into great shape, and achieve long-term results, I encourage you to shop around and find someone (or some program) that has all of these criteria …
- Excellent credentials
- Success with previous clients (and the secret ingredient …)
- They must enjoy what they do and actually CARE about you and your health.
If you think I’m a good fit, shoot me an email at CoreyLittleCoaching@gmail.com. I’d love to coach you to a better body. If you’re looking for something or someone different, no worries! Here are some other fantastic options in the Athens area.
*Tribe Fitness (Westside of Athens and Oconee)
I can’t speak highly enough of these folks. They’re super qualified, extremely professional, provide a tight-knit team type of atmosphere, and truly care about every single client. Top notch!
*Freedom Fitness Training Systems (Eastside of Athens)
My man Paul Varnadoe is a seasoned veteran in strength training and goes to great lengths to teach his clients the right way to train and get results. He knows his stuff and wants you to be successful. You can reach him at email@example.com or 706-614-5714.
*Rise Nutrition Solutions
It’s often said that nutrition is 80% of the equation – the biggest thing that determines how you look and feel. Eating right is also the thing that’s hardest to conquer. Roadblocks are everywhere. Clint Watson and I came together to create Rise to help eliminate obstacles and provide simple, easy solutions for people’s day-to-day nutrition struggles. Rise Food is that first big solution. If eating right is a struggle for you, you should definitely check it out.