By Gabe Johansson
The holiday season is always an exciting part of the year. Whether that excitement is displayed through utter joy or never ending stress, it’s an emotion provoking time.
Of course, part of the holiday season is spent through meals upon meals with family and friends, which can sometimes be a problem if you’re trying to maintain your weight. There are three effective ways to enjoy these meals without having to buy a larger wardrobe.
1. Limit Your Portion Size
While this method is probably the least effective way to keep the weight down during the holiday food rush, it can still work and takes the least amount of time to implement. Simply limit your portions and number of plates.
Do your best to eat well rounded meals including lots of protein sources and veggies. Another tip is to eat your calories and not drink them. Have diet drinks if possible or even water to limit the liquid calorie intake. It’s not difficult to have 4 or 5 cups of soda which can be upwards of 750 calories right there.
2. Eat Healthy Before Your Bigger Meals
Another way to limit weight gain this time of year is to be highly conscious of what you’re eating from day to day. If you know you have a big meal planned in a week, then do what you can to eat healthier all week. You can even apply the eating strategies above to make things easier.
The most effective way to maintain your figure during the holiday season is by practicing the flexible dieting strategy known as IIFYM, which stands for If It Fits Your Macros. While it can take a long time to practice and understand, it’s well worth learning as you can completely control your physique by manipulating certain numbers.
This method involves tracking the fat, carbohydrate, protein, and fiber contents of the foods you eat. There are many websites and mobile apps to make this process much more simple. The trick is in making this method part of your lifestyle, so a huge meal won’t really affect you much.
For example, I track the macronutrients of foods every day, so I can skip a few days per year and it won’t hardly affect me. If anything, I have more fuel for the gym.
How Will You Get Through The Holiday Meal Mania?
These three different methods can work for anyone, with each strategy getting more involved yet more effective. It really depends on how important maintaining your weight (or even losing some) is to you during this time of year. For those just trying to get by, tip number one can work well enough.
For individuals who are really concerned with appearance over this season, tips 2 or 3 could work although the third option can be used effectively year round. Whatever option you choose, be sure to make the best of it and don’t worry too much. That doesn’t mean to be carefree, but to simply make smart decisions and enjoy your time with family and friends.
Gabe Johansson is an Iron Addict, Food Fanatic, Coffee Drinker, and Guitarist. Gabe strives to help people reach their fitness goals using only the easiest and most effective strategies. Be sure to learn all about his dieting and exercise methods at GabeJohansson.com and tweet at him @GabeJohansson