One of the hardest parts of the holiday season while on your weight loss journey is the food during a holiday event. As your social calendar may be filling up, your anxiety may be increasing as well. How will you make it through not one, but multiple events? Here’s ten tips to prepare for a holiday event:
1. Bring a Healthy Dish
One technique to overcome tempting food dishes is to bring your own. We recommend bringing a dish that is meal plan-approved. If you’re not preparing the holiday meal yourself, ask your host if it would be appropriate to bring a dish that meets your dietary needs.
2. Buddy Up
Talk to a fellow dieter before the holidays. This can be a coworker, a friend, a family member, or a spouse. Plan to give each other moral support throughout the season.
3. Ask for Help
Don’t be afraid to be vocal about your holiday weight loss goals. Let your close family members, friends, and the host know your dietary needs. Most people will be respectful and encouraging. This step can combat social pressure, like encouraging you to eat seconds, drink alcohol, or eat desserts.
4. Have Food Containers Ready
If you’re hosting, plan ahead to give everyone leftovers. This way, you are not tempted to continue eating after the meal is finished. You can also choose to donate leftovers to a homeless shelter, or even bring leftovers into work.
5. Wear Snug Clothing
Use this as an excuse to be fashionable and functional! Choose a snug pair of jeans or a festive, form-fitting dress instead of comfy sweatpants for your dinner attire. Fitted clothing will help you to eat less and stay mindful of your body during holiday events.
6. Drink Plenty of Water
You should already be drinking the recommended daily amount of water, but water is an even more useful tool during holiday events. Water helps control your appetite by making you feel fuller faster. If you drink a lot of water, you will be less inclined to overeat. Drink up plenty of water prior to and during your holiday event.
7. Limit Alcohol
We understand that life, especially during the holidays, happens. Try your best to avoid alcoholic beverages, but if you must partake, choose to drink alcohol in moderation. Remember, alcohol lowers your inhibitions, which makes it that much easier to justify a third serving of dessert, plus, alcohol packs on liquid calories.
8. Stay Active and on Schedule
If you already maintain a fitness schedule, don’t let the holidays derail it. Instead of crashing in front of the TV after dinner, try going for a walk. Dancing at holiday parties is also a great way to burn calories!
9. Start a New Tradition
The holidays don’t have to be food-focused; they are what you make them out to be. Volunteering at a homeless shelter or hosting an ugly sweater contest will allow you to lean outside of your comfort zone and build your confidence to overcome any holiday food challenges you may face.
10. Motivate and Reward Yourself
If you need extra motivation, plan to reward yourself after the holidays for committing to your meal plan. Your reward can be something like seeing a new movie or buying a new sweater. Think about this motivation when faced with temptation. We know you can do this, and when you do, you deserve to acknowledge your accomplishment!
Download our My Holiday Plan worksheet to tailor to your specific needs for the holiday season!