I try. I really, really try. But… Healthy around the holidays is hard! Right? I mean, there are days and days, weeks even, of delicious food, parties, cookie exchanges, craft fairs with tasty treats… the list goes on and on, so do the calories - directly on my waist.
Now, I am all for enjoying the holidays - and if you are like me, you may want to indulge and not feel guilty about it - while also not gaining 10 pounds. Go for it. Check this out…
As in the past couple of years, I’m doing some self-accountability - and you are all now my witnesses. I am being honest with myself and realize I probably will not lose weight over the next 6 weeks - however, my goal is to maintain within 1 pound. Here we go. It all starts with a plan…
I know the holidays add up to the following days in my world - obviously we all celebrate differently:
Okay - so if we start counting from Thanksgiving Eve that gives me 10 "free" days through New Year’s Day. Which, conversely, means I have 27 days where I can stay on track. 27 days where I can choose to make healthy choices. Shoot - there goes my plan for 6 weeks of total debauchery.
Ok, you still with me? Stop reading right now, and figure out your "free" days. Let’s be accountable together. Own it.
Now we’ve figured out when we can indulge without necessarily worrying about it - although I almost guarantee if you print out your list and stick it on your fridge you won’t be as "bad" as you would have been without it.
So, now that you’ve figured out your "free" days, let’s figure out your "counteractive" days and what you can do with them. The holiday season is not a reason to forget about your exercise routine - even if you're traveling! It’s actually a great time to ramp it up, or start it up for that matter.
The Adirondacks offer amazing opportunities for burning calories - and most of them don’t seem like torture - aka exercise.
Did you know:
Data from Harvard Medical School reveals:
- A person who weighs 155 pounds burns 223 calories in half an hour.
- Someone who is 185 pounds burns 266 calories in 30 minutes.
Data from Harvard Health Publications reveals:
- A 125-pound person who spends 30 minutes cross-country skiing or snowshoeing can expect the activity to burn about 240 calories.
- If you weigh 185 pounds, you'll burn roughly 355 calories as you perform either winter activity.
And this is another interesting tidbit: if you choose cross country or snowshoeing, you can expect to burn about 45 percent more than walking or running at the same speed.
Information from skiing.com states:
- An adult between 110 and 200 pounds can burn between 250 and 630 calories per hour snowboarding.
Using one of the many online health calculators we also discovered that:
- A 150 person could expect to burn 214 calories iceskating for 30 minutes.
Of course, if you happened to glimpse me skating on the Olympic Oval this past weekend, you would know that I probably burned about 100 calories - and that was from rolling around on the ice and struggling to stand up.
Get out, have fun, bring the family - chase the kids. Winter Hiking rocks - right now, it's still a great time to bundle up and hit the trails! Go sledding, throw snowballs, shovel the snow, walk around the lake! How about challenging yourself with the Turkey Trot or Jingle Bell Run?
Indoor Activities - for those days when you "just don’t have any free time"
So, you don’t have time to hit the trails or the gym (or you simply can’t because your 5 year old is holding you hostage in his lego village). Or maybe you're visiting us here in the Adirondacks and your hotel or rental home doesn't have a gym. How about these simple tricks to rev up your metabolism…
Did you know:
Studies have shown that walking for even one to two hours a week (15 to 20 minutes a day) may help to decrease the chances of having a heart attack or stroke, developing diabetes, or dying prematurely.
And, most recent studies show that the 20 minutes of exercise doesn’t need to happen all at once. Breaking it up may prove to be beneficial in that it gets you up and moving and various times throughout the day.
Did you know if you get up and grab a couple cans of vegetables (or how about a pair of heavy ski boots?) and do arm curls during one set of commercials, you’ve worked out for 2 minutes? Hit all the commercials in a normal half-hour show and you’ve racked up 8 minutes.
You get the idea - being inside does not mean you can’t get in 20 minutes a day!
Here’s one of my favorite super-simple recipes - get ready to hit the store; it travels easily, kids love them, adults have no idea they are low fat, and I have something I can indulge in and not feel guilty about! And, even though I normally don’t like anything with pumpkin in it, this does not taste like pumpkin at all. I ask you to try it before you rule it out.
Ready? Think you can handle it?
What are some of your favorite low-fat or healthier recepes? I'd love to hear them!
Alright, so now we’ve talked about having our Plan. We know when we will indulge. We know we are going to aim to add daily exercise. We have a low fat recipe. We have no excuses! Have fun, and remember - just because you indulge for a few days doesn’t mean you need a free pass for the 6-week holiday season. I’m choosing to maintain my weight this season - what are you choosing?