Put Yourself First on Your Holiday "To Do" List

Last month’s blog covered the kick-off of the Holiday season and strategies for staying on track despite the multitude of seasonal temptations. Remember that even when you are being pulled in a million different directions, it’s important to make yourself a priority. A simple way to do this is to literally put YOU on your “To Do” list. Add things like this to your shopping list: time to exercise, time to prep healthy meals and snacks and book stress-busting massages.

If you find yourself struggling with food cravings as a result of the abundance of sweets and comfort foods, take a deep breath and try to focus your energy on socializing with friends and family and building new non-food related holiday traditions.

Now it’s December and here we are in the midst of the holiday craziness…but not to worry… my gift to you are these 12 helpful tips to support your weight loss or maintenance progress through the holidays:

12 Simple Strategies for December

  • Squeeze in any and all activity – ten to thirty minutes of daily activity is recommended during the LeanMD loss phase, so keep it simple and try to take three, ten-minute walks every day
  • Watch a video for motivation - check out this informative and entertaining video by Dr. Mike Evans called 23½: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aUaInS6HIGo
  • Do your calorie-blasting at home – a quick search on Pinterest or You Tube will provide you with tons of simple workouts to do at home with minimal equipment
  • Errands can stand in for exercise – put on comfortable athletic shoes, a pedometer or a fitness tracking device and park as far away as possible from the mall doors
  • Make tiny modifications in your day for big results – take the stairs at work instead of the elevator, visit co-workers in person instead of calling or emailing and walk to lunch instead of driving
  • Drink more water – every time you attend a holiday event (party, lunch, family potluck etc.) try drinking a glass of water before eating or drinking
  • Bring healthy snacks to share at work – while everyone else is bringing in cookies and candy, share a festive bowl of seasonal fruits such as persimmons, pomegranates or tangelos
  • Modify recipes with healthier substitutions - try making small modifications to reduce fat, carbs and calories in your family recipes eg; make a pot of chili packed with veggies, a crust-less pumpkin pie or noodles from zucchini squash instead of pasta
  • Daily activity goals – create a goal each day for the number of calories you want to burn or steps you want to take while you are out running errands…a day of grocery and holiday shopping can equal the calorie burn of an actual gym workout.
  • Gift ideas for you – ask your friends and family to chip in and buy you personal training sessions, a gym membership or wearable fitness tracker for your holiday gift this year
  • Buy a new holiday outfit – if you have not updated your wardrobe since losing weight then now is the time to buy something fitted and fabulous to show off your progress
  • Alternative to Happy Hour – instead of holiday socializing with friends over dinner or drinks, try a different venue like a coffee-house or a salon for a pedicure to catch up without the calorie-laden food and cocktails

Happy Holidays to you and yours!

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*Specific results are not guaranteed and are a result of the individual customized weight loss plan for each patient, along with exercise, diet, and lifestyle changes.