I am writing this entry about 4 weeks before the end of the year. The weeks leading up to January 1 are perhaps the most challenging “weight loss” weeks every year. The reasons are obvious: The “Holiday Season”, for most, is filled with lots of social gatherings, traditional holiday foods/drinks and family events that are usually accompanied by lots of sugar/carb containing foods/drinks as well as a bountiful amount of alcohol.
So, today I will be acting like a coach in football and will help you develop a “Game Plan” as to how to approach these next 4 weeks and NOT substantially damage your weight control efforts. The “Game Plan” should include:
- Although not denying yourself any of the “guilty pleasures” associated with the holiday season, still stay mindful of the reasons why you want (or need) to shed the weight
- Take advantage of the days that are NOT including social gatherings by strictly following a Phase 1 approach. This will build “wiggle room” for those days that carbs/sugars/alcohol will be offered up
- Make a list of the “usual suspects”, i.e. the foods/drinks that would typically destroy your weight loss efforts that are present at the social gatherings and purposely knock out 25-50% of those ingestibles.
- Keep alcohol to a bare minimum: Cut your drinks with lots of no calorie mixers so you are joining everyone with alcohol, yet by mixing minimal alcohol and lots of zero calorie fluid, you will not be damaging your weight control.
- If you imbibe in too much alcohol, do NOT allow yourself to make eating decisions when under the influence. Usually, those food choices are the exact opposite from what is compatible with weight loss
- Make it your goal to stay even on the scale over the next 4 weeks. Most people will gain a bunch of weight this month, so staying at the same weight will set you up for an easier task come January 1 when the mindset changes and the social gathering disappear
Our goal is to obtain good health so we may be able to enjoy many more years of fun holiday seasons as well as the other great times of the year. Your focus and attention on weight control will set you up for success in this mission.
And according to numerous surveys, the number one Holiday song? Mariah Carey’s “All I Want For Christmas Is You”.