Updated: Nov 23
‘Tis the season … in which most people panic about all the delicious big meals they are about to devour!
I get it! It is tough to say "no" this time of year.
Your place of work most likely has some sugary sweets laying around.
You have a whole schedule full of festivities where massive of amounts of calories will be just waiting for you to consume.
You may be on the road with no way to have everything you (think) you need to adhere to your healthy lifestyle.
What If I told you that you only had two options on how you tackle the holidays...
The first option would be to CHOOSE to wind down and enjoy this time of year OR The second option is one in which CHOOSE to be full of anxiety, stress, and fear.
All the things you struggle with in terms of "dieting" are all put right in front of you these next couple of weeks. I'm here to tell you that with a positive attitude and a bit of planning, the holiday season will be a BREEZE!
8 Steps To A Happy and Healthy Holiday
STARVING YOURSELF IS NOT THE ANSWER…
Overeating is inevitable if you plan on heading into a holiday dinner very hungry. The day of the big holiday feast, be extra cautious of what eat beforehand but do not starve yourself. If you're hungry before the party, go ahead and a meal filled with protein and veggies. This is so that when you arrive at the party, you are already somewhat full and won't want to "pig out".
SLOW DOWN… Just because it is being offered on the table does not mean you have to eat it. Prioritize the foods you do not get to eat often (like grandma's special recipe for example) and only eat what you really enjoy.
If you don’t love gravy, why eat it? If grandma's stuffing has been on your mind all year, eat more of that! If you aren’t a big drinker, pass on grandpa's wine and have yourself an extra piece of cake! Stack up on protein, but maybe go light on the pasta.
Keep in mind that your eyes tend to be larger than your stomach. What I mean is that seeing or smelling all that yummy food may trick your brain into thinking it is more hungry than it really is.
BE MINDFUL… When dinner is served, start with a modest portion and be sure to eat somewhat slowly. Now, I know that's not the end of your feast for the night. Just give yourself a couple hours before you dig in for seconds or even thirds.
If you want to go as far as measuring your good, your hands are a great tool to ensure you are not overdoing it.
Your palm determines your protein portions (turkey, ham, etc.) Your fist determines your veggie portions
Your cupped hand determines your carb portions, use this for sides (potatoes, rice, etc.) Your thumb determines your fat portions (gravy, dressings, etc.)
MODIFY… I do NOT advise you to ask your wife, mom, or grandma to change their menu. Instead, bring a dish that you'd feel good about eating and share it with the other guests. There are countless ways to make your favorite holiday foods into a calorie-friendly option. especially for breakfast! Follow me on instagram for fun and healthy recipe ideas. The possibilities are endless with just a bit of brainstorming!
KEEP MOVING… Though you may not be able to get your usual workout in, does not mean you should completely skip some sort of exercise. A moderate paced walk or jog is a whole lot better than nothing.
Again, you can visit my instagram page for a whole library of free workouts, whether you want to do it at the gym or your home.
You should go about your holiday workout as you would any other. Do it because it's a part of your daily routine. DO NOT workout just because you want to offset all the calories you will be consuming later on. Just as exercise should be seen as a privilege and not a punishment, food should be seen as a fuel, not a reward.
BE UPFRONT… Till this day, it confuses me as to why people are embarrassed about owning their transition to a healthy lifestyle. Get out there and tell all your family and friends about your choice to better your life and hopefully they will support you instead of trying to pressure those desserts onto you. You could even inspire them to take after you! If anyone you know talks about their interest in changing their lifestyle, encourage them to take my free fitness assessment quiz to help them get started!
THE SCALE IS OFF LIMITS… Progress isn't hindered by a few meals, but the number you read on the scale will be a bit off. This is NORMAL- you have all that heavy food just sitting in your stomach until it is ready to be digested. That increased number on the scale is NOT indicative of fat gain. It could be due to a multitude of things such as lack of sleep, stress, water retention, etc.
Weight fluctuation is typical for all 365 days of the year, not just the holidays. So, ease off the scale a bit during this time of year and before you hop back on the scale post-holidays, give yourself about a week to get back to normal.
SAVOR EACH BITE… You may be worried about a few extra pounds you may (probably not) pack on, but stressing about the weight gain is whole lot more unhealthy for you.
Don't take that is me saying it is ok to "pig out" just because it is the holiday season. What I'm trying to say is that a couple of days of enjoying yourself will not negatively alter your progress.
Freaking out because during the holidays will not do much other than ruin the precious time you have with your friends and family. In fact, because anxiety and stress have a linear relationship with your cortisol levels, it may actually cause you to overeat and thus have abnormal scale fluctuations!
MY CHRISTMAS GIFT TO YOU...
I know the holidays are an expensive time of year, so Gerardi Performance has teamed up with some amazing companies for some awesome discounts that may make your holidays just a little less stressful.
$15 OFF Gainful Customized Protein Powder - This is my go-to protein powder as it is affordable and personalized just for my specific goals.
20% OFF Medterra CBD Products- CBD has been clinically shown to reduce stress and anxiety. Use code gerardiperformance20
40% OFF Fabletics Clothing - These are the most comfy, stylish, and AFFORDABLE clothes- making them the perfect Christmas gift.
15% OFF Nutre Meals - Give the gift of a healthy diet with Nutre meal prep company. Gourmet and fresh foods delivered right to your door ready to eat! Use code michaelangelo_gerardi15
KEEP IN MIND… the holidays mean much more than just food. Focus on creating memories with your loved one that do not involve eating or fitness at all. It would be unfortunate to miss out on what is important because you were so wrapped up around food and gaining weight. There's no reset button on life!
From our Gerardi Performance family to yours, we wish you a HAPPY (and stress-free) HOLIDAY SEASON!