Lena Cano, Certified Personal Trainer, shares helpful information with our clients and the community at large on “Looking and Feeling Your Best this Holiday Season.” Austin Body Contouring believes that a healthier lifestyle brings about better living! As an Austin, TX leader in non-invasive body contouring we seek to provide our clients with information that will enable them to live their best lives. Wishing you a very Happy Holiday Season, we hope you find her insights below valuable as you seek to Be Your Best You!
It’s the time of year when we get together with those dearest to us to give thanks and celebrate the gift of friendship, family, and life together! The holiday cheer brings us camaraderie, food, drink, and merriment. Unfortunately for some, this season may also mean a few extra pounds show up uninvited. This year can be different! We’ve got you covered with some tips to help you defy the holiday weight gain without cramping your style.
Before diving in, keep in mind that the holidays are not the best time to focus on losing weight. Instead of trying to shed pounds during the holiday season, focus on maintaining your current weight. With proper preparation and planning you will be able to enjoy your holidays without stressing or adding on unwanted pounds. Let’s dive in!
Part 1: Tips on Food and Drinks
#1 – Hydrate
If you read our previous blog, Hydration: For Optimal Performance, you are well aware of the importance of staying hydrated. You may also recall how drinking plenty of water has been shown to aid in weight loss. The reason is water can increase satiety as well as boost your metabolic rate. Drinking just one glass of water prior to your holiday meal can help you easily avoid overconsumption of food as well as decrease your intake of excess liquid calories from sugary or alcoholic beverages. Be mindful of the types of alcohol you consume. For example, instead of high-fat eggnog, opt for a light beer or glass of wine and keep your allegiance with water for the rest of the day.
Bonus tip: If you get a hankering for some seasonal eggnog, reach for a tall, thin glass, not a short squatty one. Research shows people pour less liquid into tall glasses than into their vertically challenged counterparts. With a taller glass, you’re likely to down less in one sitting (which is especially helpful when drinking booze).
#2 – Create a Smart Plate
When it comes to feasting it’s easy to get carried away and want to indulge in every single little morsel in sight. Before you let yourself give in to temptation, take a deep breath and consider your options. Just because you want to be smart about how you eat doesn’t mean you have to miss out. The approach is focused on staying full without the fluff.
- Portion Control: A little preparation goes a long way and it’s as easy as starting with your plate. Rather than opting for a big plate, choose a small salad-size plate to help with serving size.
- Add Protein: High-protein diets are associated with greater satiety. This means help yourself to turkey, roasted chicken or meat-free alternative protein including quinoa, lentils, or beans.
- Fill up on Veggies & Fiber: Vegetables and high-fiber items will help you feel fuller longer and keep you regular. Opt for hummus dips, sweet potatoes, and all greens!
- Choose Complex Carbs: Some simple carbs such as fruit and low-fat dairy products can be good for us, but complex carbs don’t break down as quickly and therefore leave us feeling fuller, and longer. Choose items such as legumes, potatoes, corn, and whole grains to stay full and satisfied.
- Make Room for Healthy Fats: Not all fats are created equal, but not all fats are bad fats. Get healthy fats from avocados (guacamole), nuts, and olive oil (in baked goods, veggies, or homemade dressings).
- Ditch or Limit Added Sugar: While those savory desserts are tempting, try loading up on fruits (frozen grapes make a tasty treat!) or having small tastes of the desserts you are truly craving.
- Chew Slowly: Slow, mindful eating will not only allow you to truly savor the flavor in your food, but it also plays an important role in the digestive process as well as helping you recognize when you are full.
Bonus tip: While friends and family may tempt you with seconds or thirds, it is Ok to respectfully decline. Taking a break from immediately filling up your plate can help you determine if you are truly hungry. Plus, you avoid the risk of falling into a food coma due to overindulgence.
Part 2: Tips on Movement and Mindset
With all the gatherings, happenings, and events that the holidays bring, you may find yourself with little to no time to focus on yourself, let alone make time to work out. Thankfully there are solutions available to keep you active and stress-free. Keep in mind, you don’t necessarily need a gym to get a good sweat going! Nor do you need hours to de-stress.
Functional Training and Body Weight Exercises
The last thing you need is to stress over how to keep active during the holidays. The world is your gym and there are plenty of options to move it and lose it (meaning calories). Functional training and body weight exercises are great options that you can put into practice without the need for a gym. Functional training involves exercises that train your muscles to work together and prepare them for the activities performed in daily life. What’s great about functional training is you can incorporate body-weight exercises. You can train almost anywhere and with little to no equipment. It’s as easy as going for a walk, taking the stairs, squatting to pick up something heavy, or lifting a toddler overhead. Need a little more encouragement? Try the following workout. It’s beginner friendly and guaranteed to generate a little body heat. All you need is a gallon of milk or water.
Body Weight Functional Training Workout
- Farmer Walk – Take a gallon of milk or water in each hand. Walk forward for 50 steps.
- Overhead Press – Stand with your feet hip-width distance apart, and hold the gallon with both hands in front of your chest. Lift the gallon overhead 15-20 times.
- Goblet Squats – Standing shoulder-width apart, hold one gallon with both hands in front of your chest, bend your knees, and push your hips back as you lower into a squat. Drive through your heels to stand and squeeze your glutes at the top. Repeat 10-12 times.
- Mountain Climbers – Start in a high plank position with palms flat on the ground, hands shoulder-width apart. Shoulders directly over wrists, legs extended behind you. Alternate driving one knee into your chest while keeping the other leg extended for a total of 40 (20 on each leg).
Repeat the above up to 3 or 4 times. Allow yourself to rest up to a minute in between exercises or as needed and most importantly, have fun!
Sleep, stress, and overeating go hand in hand. Stress can go through the roof if you don’t sleep or eat correctly. Staying consistent with your routine is key when it comes to managing your stress levels during the holidays. If you are new to stress-reducing techniques, don’t fret. Check out the following options to bring yourself a little peace and calm.
- Mindful Breathing
The Take Home
Just a few minutes a day is all you need to set yourself up for success. Make sure you are planning out your day with wholesome meals, hydrating, keeping physically active, and practicing self-care. The holidays are meant to be enjoyed, remember? So, take a deep breath, take care of yourself, and eat a few foods you enjoy.
Lena Cano holds a Bachelor of Science in Biology with a minor in Chemistry and is a Certified Personal Trainer, Running Coach, and holds a Level 1 Nutrition Certification through Precision Nutrition. Lena strives to be the best version of herself when it comes to stability in health and relationships. For more information on her services, you can connect with her at email@example.com
Austin Body Contouring has been providing Austin Texas area clients with FDA Approved, 100% Non-Invasive Body Contouring successfully for more than eleven years. We offer a painless way to eliminate stubborn body fat and achieve your body contouring goals. Our lipo-laser weight loss is proven to remove stubborn body fat and excess inches. To schedule a complimentary consultation, call 512.660.2810 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org