During the next seven weeks, we will be focusing on how NOT to gain those holiday pounds…possibly on top of the already gained COVID weight. During the holidays, it’s common to gain between 5-10 pounds (that on top of pandemic weight gain of 15-20 pounds calls for action!) There is no doubt this has been a challenging year for many of us, but that doesn’t have to affect our outlook on the New Year–Let’s turn the corner and head toward 2021 with a healthier attitude and body!
Make a Date With the Scale – Three quarters of National Weight Control Registry participants who are successful in long-term weight loss maintenance weigh themselves at least once a week. Weighing yourself at least once a week is recommended year-round but try to monitor your weight more frequently during the holidays. Early detection can deter additional weight gain, and people who weigh themselves regularly are 1.76 times more likely to maintain their weight loss. Be careful to recognize your weight may vary daily and look at the bigger picture tracking and watching if the range is more than 1-3 pounds. This serves as an awareness and accountability tool, keeping the real focus on the behaviors that impact weight gain.
Worth it! – Keeping an eye on your weight doesn’t mean you need to deprive yourself! Allow yourself treats–but make them worth it! Watch your empty calories that aren’t special holiday treats…breads, drinks, add on fats, etc. and save the calories for items you TRULY enjoy–and savor them! Think of it as a banking account, is it worth taking money out of your ‘savings account’? Be more intentional about mindful eating.
Track it – Logging your food is an essential tool for weight management year round, but it can be especially helpful during the holidays when you’re surrounded by treats and sweets – keeping track of what you eat can make you more aware of your choices so you can moderate your “cheat treats.” Remember, just 100 extra calories per day can result in a 10 pound gain over the year! It isn’t hard to eat or drink an extra 500 calories a day during the holidays. 3500 extra calories equates to approximately a 1# weight gain. Do the math for the remaining 45 days in 2020
- 100 calories x 45 = 4500 calories = 1.28 pound gain
- 250 calories x 45 = 11,250 calories = 3.2 pound gain
- 500 calories x 45 = 22,500 calories = 6.42 pound gain
Next time you think about that 500-calorie slice of pecan pie or drink a peppermint latte with a whopping 400 calories, be mindful. If it is worth it, go for it!