How to enjoy the food and drink, feel great, and not gain a load of weight…
Do you find yourself looking forward to Christmas parties,
but also dreading them a little at the same time?
Yummy food, laughs with friends, wine galore
‘oh my God how much weight am I going to put on?!’
Christmas should be enjoyed as much as possible right?
It can get super stressful with all the shopping, work, sorting out presents for the kids, more and more stuff on your already crammed calendar, etc etc
So parties and get togethers should be a time for fun, connecting with others, letting your hair down a little.
There are definitely ways you can get the best of both worlds.
Being aware of what you’re having is really key – not just on the day, but generally over the festive season, and particularly in the days just before and after.
Having that extra awareness of everything you’re taking in means
you can enjoy the things you really love (mindfully and in an amount that makes you feel good)
and just make a few changes elsewhere to even things out.
These are my top tips for planning around a big Christmas party:
1-3 days before
aim to reduce calories slightly in easy ways, to create a little extra ‘calorie budget’ for the big event coming up
– slightly smaller portions / replacing carbs with more veggies in your evening meal / cutting out calorific drinks (just sticking to water / tea / coffee) / reducing snacks are all good ways to do this
Walk more in the week of the event – plan in ways you can walk extra and get some more steps.
Could you get out for a walk on your lunchbreak? Walk a longer route back from school? Pop out for half an hour when working from home? Do an extra long walk at the weekend?
On the day
Can you do a weights / interval training workout, either at the gym or at home?
This would be the perfect time to get in a really good session, burn some calories in advance and crank up your metabolism ready to burn more of what’s to come later!
If you do have a workout, have eggs / porridge with protein after
(this gives you protein that will replenish your muscle stores and keep you fuller for longer)
If you can’t fit an early workout in, go for yogurt and berries / protein shake for breakfast
This is a high protein and low calorie meal that should still keep you full for a while
A filling protein-based salad would be ideal for lunch – tuna / chicken / salmon with plenty of veg and a light dressing
Walk on the day if you can
This will burn some more calories, get your body moving and blood flowing, so you’ll feel better and be likely to move around more later on too.
Have a protein shake in the afternoon or just before going to the party – this will keep hunger at bay and make you likely to eat less later on.
If you don’t have protein powder, you could have a boiled egg or a high protein yogurt with some berries.
At the party, alternate alcohol with water (ask for jug on table if at dinner and there isn’t one) and drink slowly and mindfully. Enjoy every sip of that wine! 😉
If it’s a sit-down meal, eat slowly and mindfully and don’t be afraid to leave things on the plate.
Enjoy the taste of each mouthful (really appreciate the food, the smell/taste/sensation of each bite)
and consciously put your knife and fork down at least a few times to have a drink / chat to someone else.
If extra calories are going to be consumed via alcohol, aim to keep carbs and fats low in your food choices:
Avoid the bread if there is any, and be mindful of sharing starters – cheese / breaded / deep fried foods are best avoided due to being extremely dense in fat and calories!
Prawn cocktail is a classic starter that’s usually one of the better options. Soup can be good sometimes but depends which one it is – if you suspect it may contain cream / butter / oil, it’s probably best avoided.
In the main meal, eat the protein and veg part first and then if still hungry you can choose if you want to eat the carbs.
If there’s a buffet, stand and chat to people somewhere so it’s not in your eyeline and is out of arms reach!
Go to the table and take what you want then move away, otherwise you’ll just keep picking 🙂
Be mindful of food you have – is it really worth it? Some things are but a lot usually aren’t.
Avoid the things that are’nt worth it so you can enjoy the things that are!
Remember crisps and other nibbles are available any time – it’s probably best not to eat them now on top of all the other food and alcohol. If you really want them another time you can get them then.
Definitely avoid snacking on nuts – lots of calories in there that you wont need today.
If you fancy a pudding you can usually get a sorbet or small bowl of ice cream – often that’s enough to satisfy that sweet craving and still feel like you’ve had something.
When the time comes, boogie on down!
Dancing is an AWESOME way to burn off some of that food and alcohol.
Fun exercise is the best type of exercise 🙂
Have a great time and keep moving around strutting your stuff.
The day after
Plan a big walk and get things ready so it’s easy to go out even if you’re hung over.
If you over-indulged just reduce calories next day – see the tips at the beginning
Aim to eat protein and veg, some fruit, and less carbs / fats
Drink plenty of water
Make sure you have fun and don’t feel bad the next day – enjoy it, do your best but also have a great time and don’t worry. Any damage done in one night can be undone pretty quickly!
If you’re emotionally affected by the scales, avoid them for a few days after as you likely will weigh more due to storing excess water from carbs and alcohol.
Get back into healthy ways straight after and within a few days you’ll be back to where you were.
Hope that helps 😉