Let’s be honest, if you don’t feel like you’ve gained five stone over the space of three days are you really doing Christmas right?
No, absolutely not.
Among the many many things I adore about Christmas, food is at the top of my list. Well, probably in line with family. Food and family as I often say are the perfect combination.
I’ve been on a journey with my weight, with food, and with how I feel about myself for at least three years now. Although my lifestyle is a lot healthier and I have lost weight (three and a half stone as of this week!), I still love to have my treats and pig outs, and Christmas is no exception.
Of course my stomach has shrunk a little, but i’ll still be squeezing in at least 20 pigs in blankets and 5 slices of Chocolate log.
The thing is, it’s not even just the days surreounding Christmas we eat more, it’s basically the whole of December. With Christmas parties, Christmas drinks, festive duvet days, there’s always an opportunity to stuff our faces.
And that’s why I like to have a little pre Christmas detox.
Now I know I’m not some sort of diet or nutrition expert, but I have learnt a lot about weight loss and healthy eating, and i’ve found what works for me.
I figured this also might help others, so here are my top tips for staying healthy, keeping motivated, and maybe losing a couple of pounds (if you want to!) in preparation for the festive feasts.
1. Plan ahead
If you know you’ve got a meal out with friends coming up but you’re trying to stay healthy, take a look at the menu before you go. You can take time to weigh up options and you won’t make a rushed decision when you’re hungry. I know first hand the effects of hanger, the issue is real. So real.
2. Stay active
Nowadays, a lot of us work in an office sat at I desk. I do, and worryingly if I didn’t make an effort I would drive to work, sit at my desk all day, drive home and plonk on the sofa. When the weather is cold and it’s dark before and after work, it can be so hard to find time to exercise. What i’ve been doing recently is taking half an hour of my lunch to go on a brisk walk. Autumn is gorgeous, and although it’s sometimes bloody freezing, it can be so beneficial to get moving and clear your head with some fresh air.
3. Find your motivation
My motivation to detox before Christmas is basically the fact I know once mid December hits, I will really relax my eating and can start properly treating myself. This is enough to keep me on track, I can look at that tray of donuts at work and think, its fine, I only have to wait a couple of weeks. Maybe there’s one specific thing you look forward to over Christmas, the wine, or the meals out? Use this as your detox motivation.
4. Meal plan
When I’m trying to detox or lose a few pounds, meal planning is so important. I can decide on healthy meals for each night of the week and I won’t be stuck in the position of not knowing what to have. Because that usually leads to one of two things – a takeaway, or spaghetti and sausages on toast. Neither ideal in this situation (although of course delicious). Meal planning also means saving money, which is even more of a benefit when Christmas is just around the corner.
5. Treat yourself
One thing i’ve learnt about dieting and healthy eating is that you just have to treat yourself. It is impossible to restrict yourself from having what you love, and you know what, it’s not good for anyone. This kinda comes hand in had with meal planning and it might make me sound super sad but hey ho, I usually plan my snacks for the evening. I might have a chocolate biscuit and a cup of tea, or a chocolate mouse. Whatever it is, it’s just about moderation and sometimes having that to look forward to makes things a whole lot easier.
6. Buy a Christmas outfit
Christmas is all about the sparkly dresses and glittery heals. Buy yourself something new for a party or event near Christmas. Knowing how good you’ll feel in that outfit when you’ve been detoxing will really help with motivation.
7. Drink green tea
This is something I don’t just do pre Christmas, I drink green tea every day. At least three cups a day. There are so many things I like about green tea, if I’m feeling peckish throughout the day, I usually have a cup before eating anything, and 9 times out of 10 it really fills me up. It’s loaded with antioxidants and has loads of benefits to your body. Plus it’s very good at warming me up in the winter mornings!
The thing to remember as well, is that nothing is final. Let’s say you overeat over Christmas, (and I hope you will!) it’s not the end of the world. We all need to allow ourselves to relax, and enjoy it. After all, it only comes once a year.
Let me know if you have any of your own detox tips, and of course, enjoy the festivities!