As Thanksgiving approaches, daydreaming about pumpkin pie, roasted turkey, and mashed potatoes is on the raise.  The holidays bring great times, loving company, exquisite food, and dreaded pounds.  If Thanksgiving dinner was the only event, weight gain would not cause a problem but the continuous gatherings, cocktails, events, cookies at the office and everything else results in quite a few unwanted pounds so what is the solution?

Start by facing reality, hiding in a cave until the end of December is not an option nor do you want to miss out on the festivities.  Set a reasonable goal for the season, no gain!

Yes, no gain is a reasonable goal.  With some planning you can participate in the fun, enjoy some goodies here and there, and still rock the same body at the end of the holiday season. Here is the game plan:

  1. Exercise and make your workouts a priority so you do not let them slip during the holidays. Research shows exercise is a key player in weight maintenance.
  2. Be generous, when invited to a gathering make sure to take a low calorie, healthy dish you enjoy.  This way there will always be an option you like waiting when other high calorie dishes tempt you.
  3. Eat a light snack before hitting the parties. If you are hungry, you are more likely to head for the snack table and start filling up on calorie dense foods even before dinner is served.  By arriving satisfied, you will more likely skip the appetizers and make healthier choices during dinner further reducing the calories you consume.
  4. Trade off, try to compensate for over eating by cutting back calories when you can.  Skip dessert, have a light lunch on days you are invited out or try fresh vegetables and fruits for snacks instead of the usual granola bar of bag of chips.
  5. Do not drink your calories. Yes, the pumpkin lattes and mint mochas tempt us numerous times a day but giving into them is not the way to go.  High in fat, sugar and sometimes even salt, they are not only bad for your waistline but for your heart as well.

Keep these tips in mind during the holidays and focus on your ‘no gain’ goal.  Keeping the weight off now is much easier than trying to loss it again comes January.