The holidays are over, the family has gone home, you’ve cleared all the leftovers out of the fridge, and your life is finally regaining some semblance of normalcy. Unfortunately, it’s also time to step back on the scale and assess the damage (as if your too-tight jeans can’t tell the whole story already).
Year after year, the most popular New Year’s resolution is to lose weight and get in shape. If you’re like most people then you’re motivated to shed the extra pounds you packed on over the holidays.
Like most people, however, you’ve also probably done this before; maybe even every year for many years, with various levels of success. One thing is usually true, though. You go strong for a while, maybe a few weeks or even a few months, before something throws a wrench in the works and your best laid plans peter out.
What can you do differently this year? How can you get back your pre-holidays body and keep the ball rolling not just into the new year, but until the holidays return?
If you’re tired of the quick fix and you want a more permanent solution this year, here are just a few tips to get you on the right track and make your pre-holidays body the one you enjoy year-round.
Take Away Temptation
We’re only human, and most of us, when faced when temptation, can only say no so many times. In other words, it’s time to get rid of any leftover chocolate and candy canes that are still hanging around after the holidays, along with other known temptations.
Whether you’re tempted by salty snacks like potato chips or you can’t seem to stop yourself when there’s a bag of Oreos in the house, you probably know what your weaknesses are. Instead of testing your resolve, make your fitness journey a little less stressful by replacing these temptations with healthy snacking options.
If you were paying better attention to what was going in your mouth, you might not be wondering what happened to your pre-holidays body. It’s only natural to fall into complacency, but when your goal is to lose weight and get fit, you can’t afford to let things slide – you need to know exactly how many calories you’re consuming and what they’re doing for your body.
The easiest way to accomplish this is with a food journal that tracks everything you eat, from the healthy salad you have for lunch to that spoonful of peanut butter you sneaked afterward. Don’t forget to track your exercise and the calories you burn, as well. Calories in, calories out – it’s the most basic information needed to steer your weight loss journey.
Hold Yourself Accountable
Even though you’re tracking your calories and weighing in regularly, it can be helpful to have some form of accountability. You might want to consider joining a weight loss/fitness community or even simply using an online program that allows you to input information and track your progress.
Weight Watchers, for example, has weekly weigh-ins at meetings. Online communities like SparkPeople not only offer tools for tracking, but also support from other community members.
You could also hire a personal trainer. This added element could be what you’ve missed out on in the past, and it might just keep up your motivation to attain your pre-holidays body throughout the year.
Rethink Eating Habits
Many adults have to re-learn how to eat after years of bad habits and expanding waistlines. If you’re not sure where to start, visit ChooseMyPlate.gov.
The reinvented food pyramid actually features a plate that shows you how to properly portion fruits, vegetables, lean meats, whole grains, and low-fat dairy products for every meal. You’ll also find all kinds of other information on healthy eating habits that can help you approach consumption and nutrition in a new and healthier way.
Set a Workout Schedule
One reason many people start out strong with exercise and then taper off over time is that they never make fitness a priority. If you really want to regain and maintain your pre-holidays body, add workouts to your schedule along with your other daily activities.
Put the Right Tools in Place
Do you have any idea how many programs and apps exist to help you when you’re losing weight, getting fit, or trying to maintain a healthy lifestyle? With trackers, community support, expert advice, and reporting features, it’s easy to stay on track with the right technology in your pocket. With a little help you can get back your pre-holidays body and create a healthier outlook for life.