6 Tips For A Healthier And Slimmer Lifestyle
The holidays are upon us, and for many of us that means a little extra indulgence and packing on some additional winter weight. And sometimes you are just so exhausted from all the hustle and bustle that you cannot bear the thought of taking the time to prepare a home cooked meal, so you sustain yourself on take out and frozen dinners.
Whatever’s weighing you down this holiday season, we’ve got you covered. Here are 6 of the best tips from health experts for staying healthy and maintaining your weight this holiday season and for the long term.
1. Soup or salad first
While this may seem difficult at this time of year when unhealthy options are in abundance, healthy holiday eating is totally possible with a little bit of will power and some quick thinking. A good rule of thumb is to always eat a broth-based soup or green salad before your meal.
If neither is an option at your holiday soiree, try loading up on veggies from a nearby platter and avoiding creamy dips. If you’re heading into a diet danger zone, eat an apple before you arrive for the same effect. By following this rule of thumb, you will feel fuller and be less likely to overeat.
2. Stay away from the munchies, literally
Whether you are at a party or at home, position yourself away from temptation. Whether it’s a dessert table or a fridge full of scrumptious leftovers, avoid mindlessly sampling while you watch television or mingle by putting it out of your reach. Strategically placing yourself across the room and you’ll be less likely to fill your plate.
3. Make your meals when you have time
If you’re falling into the trap of not having time to cook during the week, why not cook your meals in bulk over the weekend and simply defrost them on weeknights? That way you don’t have to worry about taking the time to prepare a meal after work when your time is limited. Casseroles, quiches, chili dishes, and large batch stir-fries are all healthy options depending upon your eating style.
4. Exercise – it’s all about timing
One of the best pieces of advice I ever received about sticking to a workout schedule is this: Exercise at a time of day where you’ll be most likely to remain committed. Don’t start getting up at 5AM to work out if you’re not a morning person because realistically, you probably won’t stick to the schedule.
If your peak energy level is at lunchtime, sneak in a nice walk with a colleague on your lunch hour or hit the gym at your workplace. But plan your exercise around your energy levels and lifestyle, not the other way around.
5. Working out doesn’t have to be work
Rather than thinking of exercise as work, try to choose activities that you enjoy and can incorporate into a routine that’s fun. For example, if you love to dance you may want to check out local gyms that integrate dance into their group exercise programs.
Many gyms offer Zumba and hip hop dance classes, so take the time to call a few places and see what would be a good fit for you. As an alternative, you can also burn off those extra holiday calories by simply putting on some music and practicing your dance moves in the living room! You can even incorporate it into your family time during the day.
6. Use tech to stay motivated
If you need an accountability partner but don’t have the heart to drag your BFF to the gym every morning at 5am, think about turning your smartphone into a resource. Apps like LIFT are amazing for keeping you on track with specific healthy lifestyle habits.
Websites like Fitday.com allow you to record your food choices and give you a detailed look at your fat and calories. The newest technology like the My Basis keeps track of movement, calories, and sleep. Be honest about your weakness and think about how a technological partner can keep you on track.
Shedding those extra pounds of winter weight and staying healthy don’t require that you make drastic changes to your lifestyle. These simple healthy lifestyle tips can help get you on the path to looking and feeling great!