Many people claim winter as their favorite season. White Christmas, hot chocolate, delicious baked goods, and cheerful music—what more could you ask for?
Unfortunately, winter is often the time when many people gain weight. In fact, some reports show that people can gain between five and seven pounds during the winter months. This weight gain is caused by all of those yummy treats and big meals you are more likely to eat, as well as the cold weather and less daylight.
As the days become darker and colder, you will probably become more tempted to skip the gym and stay inside where it is warm and comforting. However, you need to avoid the temptation to stay inside as much as possible. Make a workout schedule and stick to it. If you don’t trust yourself enough to drive to the gym after going home to change, put on your workout clothes before you leave the office. As cold as it may be, think about how much better you feel after a good workout and a shower.
To feel even better, don’t forsake your diet for high-calorie, sugary sweets. This tends to happen more often in the winter, especially with all of the holiday parties you attend. One way to avoid snacking on sweets at parties is to eat before you go. If you fill up on healthy snacks at home, you won’t be tempted to sample every cookie, bar, and piece of cake at the party. Try munching on a salad filled with veggies or healthy finger foods such as baby carrots or cherry tomatoes with hummus. When you munch on snacks that are high in fiber before the party, you can feel full without all the weight gain and bloat from unhealthy treats. Studies also show that you will eat less food if it is something you prepared at home.
You also want to avoid too much alcohol at all of these holiday parties. While this will save you plenty of empty calories, it can also save you the embarrassment you may experience from too many drinks. Although this may be difficult to do while everyone around you is drinking, you can do it. Instead of drinking glass after glass of wine, try switching up every other glass with a cup of water or diet soda.
If you do slip up at a party (or even at home), it is not that big of a deal. You can’t ruin all your hard work in one day. Even if you feel that you hit rock bottom with your diet plan, you can only go up from there. Work harder for the next few days. Cut your calories down a little bit, eat healthier meals, and work out more. Try to run a little faster this week or go a few minutes more than you typically do.
It can be difficult to stay on a strict fitness and diet plan when you have so many temptations. All you need to do is remember how you felt last year at the end of the winter season. Did you eat too many sweets and skip the gym too much, or did you fight through all the temptations and come out of February without the extra weight? Whether it was the former or the latter, you can still use those feelings to motivate you.
Guest blogger Doug Adams writes about a variety of psychological health topics. Whether he is writing about self-image issues people face after gaining weight or tips for shy guys who are interested in asking a girl out, Doug hopes his words help the people who need them.