Stuff the Turkey, Not Yourself

Holidays are the best time of year for family, friends and relaxation...but not so great for your waistline. On average, Americans gain 3-7 extra lbs. during the holidays. Eek! The food is delish, but what you eat over the holidays sets up your entire next year, and if you're headed downhill, it might be hard to get back on track.

Health Tips to Keep You on Track this Holiday Season

  • Keep the H2O flowing. Water helps control your appetite by making you feel fuller faster.
  • Bring a healthy side dish to family dinner. How about this yummy SautĂ©ed Brussels Sprouts with Bacon & Onions option? Or this Healthy Potato Gratin with Herbs dish?
  • Substitute sour cream with plain Greek yogurt. I swear you can't tell the difference!
  • Take a walk after dinner. Skip the nap, get the blood flowing, and burn extra calories.
  • Skip the seconds! Save the yummy leftovers for the next day.
  • Enjoy in moderation. Don't waste calories on stuff you eat all year. Instead, give yourself reasonable portions of the good stuff grandma makes once a year, and enjoy it.
  • Get active. Spend an hour doing your favorite exercise before a big meal. Or make a workout date with a friend for the next morning.

Best Bets for Foods Lower in Calories and Fat

  • White turkey meat
  • Plain vegetables
  • Roasted sweet potatoes
  • Mashed potatoes
  • Defatted gravy
  • Pumpkin pie

Don't Forget About the Workout

Please don't be one of those gym-goers in January who takes my spin bike, but doesn't return after month one. If you make a commitment to get (or stay) healthy in 2014, stick to it! How to do that? Pick workouts you actually enjoy! To start, break out a list of what you like and dislike in terms of working out, like mine below.

LIKES DISLIKES

  • Loud, motivating music
  • Group classes
  • Interval training
  • Spinning
  • Bootcamps
  • TRX
  • Working out alone
  • Running
  • Step classes
  • Did I already say running?

You get the point. Clearly I stay away from running (although on a side note, I did finish the Chicago 1/2 Marathon which I vowed to be my last race ever). But ultimately, I LOVE high-intensity, bootcamp-type classes with loud music and extra energy from fellow bootcampers. It works for me. Once you figure out what works for you, it's much easier to consistently work sweat sessions into your lifestyle.