Christmas is approaching and so are the inevitable Christmas parties and social gatherings, which usually means that we tend to over indulge and put on weight!
There are so many parties to attend and so many temptations. The good news is that we can still have a fabulous time and enjoy all the treats without waking up the next morning regretting everything we ate, drank or did.
In the past, when the ‘silly season’ was over, I have either been regretful and ashamed of stacking on the kilos which were diligently banished with my dedication, sweat and tears during the preceding months or I have felt very proud of myself by enjoying the treats that I had planned for and not having food and drinks to excess.
How do you want to feel the next day?
I have put together some tips that I have developed through trial and error and continue to work for me today.
Before you get there – Plan, Plan, Plan
Find out what is on the menu is and choose your meal wisely before you go to the party. Otherwise you may get distracted with the festivities and choose meals that may not be the best option for you. You can even plan for what you are going to drink.
Eat something before you go.
Don’t arrive at the party feeling hungry because you have ‘saved your appetite’. You will end up splurging on high calorie foods that you do not need. Eat a little protein and fibre such as yoghurt and a piece of fruit.
You have arrived – Enjoy don’t destroy
You do not have to order exactly what is on the menu. Most chefs are happy to make variations upon request. For example, if the Fish of the Day is beer battered fish – ask that it be grilled with vegies or salad instead of chips. Ask for dressings and sauces on the side so that you can control how much you eat.
Choose meals described as steamed, grilled, baked, sautéed, stir-fried or poached NOT fried, crumbed, battered, creamy or in coconut milk. At a buffet – place a maximum of 3 different types of foods on your plate so that you choose what you really desire so that you can savour the individual tastes and enjoy your food.
Do not stand next to the food table.
Walk away! Enjoy the company of your family and friends or make yourself useful by helping the hosts! Pour your own drinks so that you keep track of how much you are drinking and frequently take a break from alcohol and drink a sparkling mineral water instead (have it in a Champagne glass – far more elegant!). Do not allow your drinks to be topped up – it is so easy to lose track of what you are drinking this way.
Dance up a storm – what a great way to do your exercise and burn those calories.
The day of reckoning – what happened?
If you have had a great time, enjoyed your special treats that you planned for and did not over indulge – Well Done! You can do this again & again!
If not – reflect back and ask yourself what went wrong so that you develop a strategy for the next party. Don’t beat yourself up! We have all been there. Learn from all your experiences.
Do more exercise than you would normally, such as an extra-long power walk to burn away any additional calories.
Do not continue splurging just because you “broke your diet”. That was yesterday and today is a new day and a new start.
Wishing you a wonderful & guilt free Xmas without regrets!