With the holidays just around the corner, now is the time to think about what you’ll do with that plate of turkey and mac n’ cheese — will you be stuffed like a turkey or will you be svelte for the new year?
There are many reasons why the holidays are a grand time. They are a time in which to be happy — you are spending time with family, friends, and loved ones and exchanging stories and gifts. This is also the time of fatty foods and “soul” food cooking that may taste amazing (like seriously amazing), but can be harmful to your health and your happiness.
Here are 8 tips to help you lose those that stubborn belly fat and keep it off during the holidays!
1. Drink Plenty Of Water
Yes, it’s a rule as old as time, or at least as old as whenever the USDA created those guidelines. Drinking at least eight 8-oz glasses of water a day will help you not only maintain your weight but aid in weight loss. You’ll also start to notice changes in your skin and nail health. It promotes an overall healthy body and keeps your skin glowing, your waist slimmer, and your hair shinier!
2. Don’t Go Back For That Second Helping
During the holidays, it is normal for us all to go back to the kitchen for second, sometimes even third, helpings, but this is not good. If you’re trying to stay slim and not feel like your zipper on your pants is about to bust open, it is important to avoid over-indulging in holiday foods. There is nothing wrong with having a slice of grandma’s famous sweet potato pie, but going back for the whole pie should be avoided!
3. Create A Plan
Everything you do in your life requires some plan of attack or some idea of how you want to achieve it. This is very true for losing weight and getting rid of belly fat — you must create a plan of action on how you want to drop those extra pounds. It is as simple as taking time one afternoon and writing down what your goals are for weight loss, whether it’s to fit in that new dress for Christmas or just to be beach ready for the Spring!
4. Do More Cardio Exercises
Cardio and other exercises lead to smaller waistlines, but also happier attitudes. When you exercise, you release endorphins that aid in you feeling happier, and nothing brings about more happiness than seeing the results of your hard work. You know your body better than anyone, and you know what exercises are more challenging for you, so it is important to always consult a doctor or medical professional before engaging in rigorous activity.
5. Start Off Slow
Losing weight, especially belly fat, can take time — nothing is ever done in a few weeks. Those fad diets and juice fasts will help you to lose weight, but usually you’re losing muscle and the results don’t last. In order to lose belly fat and keep it off, you must change your habits and your routine and make up in your mind that you are ready to be healthier. Losing belly fat must start with you taking it slow and changing a few habits, then incorporating exercise and portion control.
6. Eat More Protein And Less Sugar (You Can Still Eat!)
When dropping belly fat, it is important to not completely stop eating and to starve yourself — that is detrimental to not only your weight loss but your overall health! Eat more foods that are high in protein, such as chicken, eggs, salmon, and lamb. Eat less foods that are high in sugar and fat, such as pies, cake, ice cream, cookies, and the like. Many may think it is hard to eat less sugars due to the holidays. However, sweet potatoes and yams, not cooked in all that extra butter and sugar, are healthier and are still a sweet alternative to indulging in holiday sweets.
7. Eat More Fiber (Yes, Jaime Lee Curtis Was Right)
Eating more fiber not only helps to regulate your digestive system but it aids in losing belly fat. All those commercials were right, incorporating more fiber into your diet will help you to feel better and less bloated.
8. Keep A Journal
It is important to document your weight loss and to keep track of what you’re eating and your weight loss goals. There is nothing wrong with having a journal at any age, not only can you express your frustrations but you can also have a physical representation of your goals and you can check them off each time you achieve them. So, this holiday when your family asks why you’re writing in that notebook, tell them that you’re trying to make it into the new year with a slimmer waistline!
Featured photo credit: Viktor Hanacek via picjumbo.com