The holiday season is a period that is characterized with excesses. We eat too much, drink too much, sleep too much and spend too much time being sedentary. It is no surprise, therefore, that most people usually put ‘lose weight’ somewhere at the top of their New Year’s resolutions list. However, how do you actually achieve that? While many experts recommend to pace yourself during the holiday season so that you don’t put weight on in the first place, most of us are realistic enough to know that we simply do not have the willpower for that. Instead, we would want to know how to get rid of the excess weight. Hopefully, the following hints and tips will be of benefit to you and will prevent you from feeling too guilty about having over-indulged over the season. After all, feelings of guilt tend to lead to nothing but eating once again.
Just after the holiday season, the media is inundated with reports on weight loss. Some of them profess that you can lose all your excess weight in just a week, others state that people shouldn’t even bother for about three months after the festive period. The reality is that you must, at all times, be realistic.
One or two pounds a week maximum is doable. Top weight-loss programs advocate stopping after the first 10 pounds and maintaining that loss for about six months before trying to lose any more.
This essentially means that you shouldn’t beat yourself up if you don’t lose a whole lot straight away, or if progress is a little slower than you expected. Be realistic not just in terms of what you want to achieve, but what you can achieve as well. You may be able to lose five pounds in a week by starving yourself, but that shouldn’t be something you actually decide to do.
Unfortunately, the drinking you need to do now has to do with water. While you may have enjoyed many bottles of red wine and the occasional tipple of brandy during the season, it is now time to start hydrating properly again. This means you must drink plenty of water.
It’s easy to mistake thirst for hunger, so try drinking a glass of water instead of eating when you feel hungry. Water is essential for the body to run efficiently, makes you feel better and keeps you sharp and alert. Try to avoid caffeine by substituting coffee and black tea for herbal alternatives.
Drinking plenty of water will also help you to flush your system out, essentially cleansing it of all the toxins and processed chemicals that you consumed over the period. Water is the building block of life and it is completely calorie free, so drink plenty of it. Warm it up and add a slice of lemon for a nice taste as well.
A lot of people think that the weight they put on over the holiday season is due solely to the fact that they have a large Thanksgiving dinner followed by a large Christmas dinner, and a lot of alcoholic drinks in between. While those activities certainly play a part, they forget the effect stress has had on their weight gain as well.
Decorating your home in time, shopping for gifts and organizing family visits can take a toll on you. Before you know it, you’re eating a tub of ice cream in order to soothe your nerves.
This really shows how important it is that you learn to relax again. Perhaps one of your Christmas presents was a nice bubble bath, scented candle or meditation CD. If not, treat yourself to some and learn to relax again. When you are calm and relaxed, you will be less likely to start eating again and you will, at the very least, not put more weight on.
Get Rid of Sweeteners
A lot of people eat and drink far too many sugary foods and drinks over the festive season. They believe that they can mitigate this damage by removing sugar and adding sweeteners instead. And, often, they continue to stick to the sweeteners after the festive season. In reality, however, if there is one thing you should get rid of, they are the sweeteners.
He advises against artificial sweeteners and suggests green stevia powder if you must sweeten your morning coffee or tea. If you need a sweet kick while snacking, Schmidt recommends naturally sweet fruits like dates, figs, and berries.
Many of us focus on fats and carbohydrates. This is important in order to eat a healthy diet, but sugar is a really big no-no as well. Replacing it with a sweetener is not a good solution. Some are now even suggesting that sweeteners are unfit for human consumption and should be banned from the market altogether. Always use nature’s way to sweeten things up instead.
Fall in Love with Salsa
Finally, a little known tip that will help you lose tremendous weight is to add salsa to everything. The spicier the salsa, the better. It really is the first thing you should get from your grocery store if you’re ready to shed the pounds.
This spicy condiment can stand in for mayo to deliver a good amount of flavor without the body fat. Mix it with a certain amount of low-fat yogurt to help make tuna salad. Spread it on the veggie burger, or mix it with chicken as well as fish.
As you can see, there are plenty of things you can do to lose the weight you put on over the festive period. It is about being realistic and focusing on a healthy diet. Of course, you should not forget to move either. Getting plenty of exercise is vital to the success of any weight loss regimen you follow. Similarly, it is probably because you stopped moving as much that you managed to put on so much weight during this season in the first place. Don’t beat yourself up over it, though, but change it.