Hey there! I hope you’re all doing well and have gotten a chance to add some of my favorite exercises into your routines. With the holidays coming up, I thought it would be a good idea to talk a little about eating over the holidays.
With all the tasty food that starts rolling out at Thanksgiving (and keeps coming until the New Year), “letting yourself go” during the holidays is as easy as falling asleep during all of my wife’s TV shows. In fact, the only thing easier is going a little overboard and piling your plate up with delicious food that can only be found this time of year. Especially when you’re around friends, family, and the television (I don’t know about you but we watch the Lions every Thanksgiving). But food commas can end in deep regret.
Here are a few things to keep in mind when navigating the dinner table over the next several weeks.
First, focus on moderation! Instead of going back for seconds (or thirds…) simply stop after the first plate. I know if can be tough, I find myself going back for the cheesy potatoes and rolls. No one likes to feel so stuffed they need to be rolled out of the house either. When it comes to seconds, just take a pass. Along this same line, if you have a few dinners to go to, opt for much smaller portions at each or choose to eat a certain part of the meal at each stop. Maybe appetizers and dinner salad at the first stop and main course and desert at stop number two…
Second, be smart about what you fill your plate with. Shoot for at least half of your plate with fruits and veggies, a quarter for your grains, and a quarter for your protein of choice! Be aware of some of the staple Thanksgiving dishes like sweet potatoes. Alone, sweet potatoes are a great choice. Unfortunately, many of the recipes call for lots of added sugar and marshmallows, which bumps up the calorie content quite a bit.
Third, don’t skip your daily exercise! Whether its hitting the gym for some weight training or getting on your favorite piece of cardio equipment, you’ll not only feel a little better about setting your diet aside for a day, but you can offset some of the damage done during dinner.
Lastly, if you can, why not host Thanksgiving yourself for your friends and family? You can find tons of healthier recipes online that can help keep you on track to your fitness and weight goals. Not only can you stay on track, but you may be able to show others that healthier options can be just as tasty!
Now understand, being consistent with your fitness and eating habits is one of the most important aspects of achieving your goals. This doesn’t mean that you can’t enjoy yourself every once in a while. If you’re eating well and getting your exercise in on a consistent basis, one day won’t do too much damage.
I hope you are able to enjoy these next few weeks with the people you’re most thankful for. And remember, keep your eyes on the prize!
Trevor Klump, MS, CSCS, USAW1, Pn1