Happy & Healthy: Preparing for the Holidays

2015If you’ve been following me on Facebook and such, you know that I haven’t been keeping up with Happy & Healthy this year. I know, I know–shame on me. However, that doesn’t mean I shouldn’t take the opportunity RIGHT NOW to start anew, to make better choices, and to share the ups and downs with all of you.

Of course, I would choose the months with the craziest food holidays to jump back in. Let’s just say, my biggest goal is not to GAIN any weight this holiday season. Losing weight would just be icing on the cake–I mean, gravy on the potatoes–wait, no, dressing on the salad?

Going into this time of year, there’s a few things to keep in mind.

  1. Halloween candy should be banned after Nov. 1. Get rid of it. Pawn it off on the neighbor kids or do some cool science experiments with it for your own kids. There’s no reason to be plumping ourselves up before we even get to the big event.
  2. Find ways to get/stay active, even as the weather turns cooler. If you don’t like the outdoors, find some workout videos or visit a gym. My church will let people come walk around the track over our gym on certain days! Yard work might be killer, but it also burns calories!
  3. Say this with me: “It is okay to indulge a little during the big meals, but do NOT overdo it!” C’mon, now, the holidays are important. Families comes together over this deliciously prepared food–and lots of it. While you may normally avoid the starchy mashed potatoes to “trim the waist,” there is no reason you can’t have a small helping on Thanksgiving Day. Now, if that helping takes up half the plate, or if that “small helping” happens 10 times over 2 days–that’s not good. A small dessert plate with a couple favorite desserts is NOT going to completely throw your diet into a tailspin.
  4. In fact, some experts say that denying some indulgence completely can actually cause more issues, including totally giving up, overindulgence when stressed/guilty, depression, etc.
  5. After the big meal, though, show some restraint. Combine leftovers with healthy options, eat smaller portions, etc.
  6. When you do eat a little more, just be sure to find ways to keep your metabolism high: a family football game after dinner, a quiet walk with a close family member, serving in a soup kitchen for a few hours . . .

I think I’m about ready for the holidays. Right now, I’m more worried about NaNoWriMo, and how my body is going to survive that! My priority in November is to make sure I am consistent in taking my medications, that I find ways to move around while I’m being productive in my more sedative jobs (writing, editing, homeschooling), and that I keep portion sizes in mind while I eat.

How do you combat overindulgence during the holiday season?