Nov 182014
 

I was really hoping to have lost a decent amount of my honeymoon weight BEFORE the holidays hit this year.  Sadly, that wasn’t the case. I was plugging along, doing my best to eat properly, measuring my food, counting my calories (even the bites) and limiting the alcohol intake. I did okay throughout the latter part of October and most of November.

I was determined not to gain weight during the holiday season. It’s so easy to just say “oh well, I guess I’ll gain that Christmas 5″ but I didn’t want that to happen this year. As with most years when the holidays hit, my goal is to just MAINTAIN where I am. Bare minimum, stay where I’m at. That means I can still indulge here and there and I don’t feel like I’m depriving myself of everything “fun.”  Check out this old post, an oldie but a goodie, on this very topic: Why Wednesday- Why You Don’t Quit for the Holidays.

The biggest thing I can do for this is limiting the liquid calories. Historically speaking I would stop drinking my calories (in all forms) starting the day after Thanksgiving until Christmas Eve-ish. That has worked well for me in the past because it was calories I didn’t necessarily need so for 30 days I could abstain and that would keep the weight steady. Here are a few old posts about Thanksgiving:

Rebel Turkey Day

Setting a Skinny Table

Any Way You Slice That Pumpkin Pie

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Christmas is harder for me. There’s a lot of events–Michael’s work throws a big party that’s catered and has a full bar. My family always threw a big shindig with amazing food and my aunt’s famous eggnog. So much temptation!

Christmas Cookies – Part 1

Christmas Cookies – Part 2

Christmas Cheer

Then of course there is the hot cocoa, which usually satisfies my sweet tooth and is a good low-calorie dessert, but sometimes drinking cocoa makes me want a warm, yummy cookie to go along with it! Dammit more temptations!

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Losing during the holiday season is such a struggle. The social eating is what has always been my downfall. I try my best and I go into these situations with good intentions but then there’s always something on that buffet table that I find irresistible. So how do you stop that binge?

There are a few tricks I use. If I am going to a holiday party where I know there will be lots of good food, I make sure that I get my workout in first. If nothing else it gives the day balance. Next, I try to eat sensibly the rest of the day. That does not mean starving myself, but it also does not mean that the entire day is a waste and I should just eat whatever I want.

Sparkling water and diet soda do wonders. If you don’t want to spend your calories on alcohol, or want to limit the intake, this is a great trick. Sparkling zero calorie drinks can fill you up temporarily and you have something in your hand that you are drinking. So it’s not like you’re standing there like a scrooge while everyone is partying. In the past I did this at my family holiday party because was pretty much a whole day affair and that’s a LOT of calories if you just eat and drink the entire time. I pace myself. I start with water. I switch to diet soda. Then later in the evening I might indulge in an adult beverage or two.

Those adult beverages add a LOT of calories to your meal. Is it worth it? Usually not. Read this post if you haven’t: I Had a Drinking Problem.

Despite not making the dent in my weight loss that I had hoped before the holidays, I am going back to the “just try and maintain” method for the rest of 2014. That is my goal, along with maintaining my fitness routine. Some of my other goals: avoid holiday baking at home (there is plenty everywhere else, I don’t need to make any more!), try not to beat myself up about indulging here and there and most importantly: weigh myself once a week to CHECK IN. Stay on track!

Check out this link for some more tips: 32 Science-Backed Ways To Avoid Holiday Weight Gain

How do you keep the weight gain at bay during the holidays?

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Nov 102014
 

I had a pretty good weekend. To be honest, the last few weekends have been a struggle for me. The weather was ugly, the darkness was making me tired and I was feeling very distressed about my weight. I was starting to get into the “must restrict” mentality and when I ate something I deemed to be “not healthy” I felt like a failure and would beat myself up about it. All weekend long. One slip-up, even if I hadn’t gone over my calories, felt like I failed. It sucked. It was kind of a dark place to be. I felt resentful of (seemingly) everyone else on the planet that could eat and drink whatever they wanted and not worry about their weight. I felt like I wasn’t making any progress. I actually broke down and bought some clothes in one size up because I was tired of crying every time I put on my pants and they felt skintight.

So that’s where I was the last few weeks. This weekend I didn’t feel like that too much. I was on track with my food. I was feeling more positive. I wasn’t feeling STARVING all the time like I had been for the last month and a half. And I had some good workouts. This was the Warrior Room on Saturday (and I went up in weight in the kettle bells!):

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It was a great workout and I am reminded just how important the Warrior Room routine is to my knee health. I noticed that when I took time off when I was sick, then the wedding, then the honeymoon, my knees started to bother me. But when I go to the WR consistently my knees are happier. It really does show how unbalanced my body is naturally. I need to work extra hard to keep those glutes strong to keep my knees strong!

This was Sunday’s workout — despite feeling a little stiff and sore I was able to get in a 2 mile run on the treadmill before yoga class:

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The yoga teacher seemed to psychically know that I needed extra hip stretching because most of the moves in that particular class worked on the hips (thank goddess!).

I also ate really healthy foods. I wanted to share one of the finds because it was so delicious. Years and years ago I was a vegetarian but I wasn’t very good at it and didn’t eat in a healthy way, I just didn’t eat meat. There also weren’t a lot of options for vegetarians 15 years ago. The faux foods weren’t good and I think the only option was Morning Star, which I’ve never liked.

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I got these veggie burgers at Trader Joe’s on a whim and I’m so glad I did! They were amazing! I loved them. For dinner on Sunday night I cooked up one of these veggie burgers and had some sauteed Brussels Sprouts with onions (cooked in coconut oil) with some cottage cheese on the side. It was a really filling dinner and it was only around 400 calories. I loved these burgers!

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If you have a Trader Joe’s near you, I highly recommend you give them a try. I will be buying more of them and working them into my meal rotation. The only downside is that you have to cook them in a skillet. I don’t know if they’d turn out in the microwave, so I don’t know that it would be a feasible option for lunches at work. But on the weekends it would be a great lunch option.

The weather was also really nice on Saturday. I got so much stuff done–a lot of the usual chores in addition to a bunch of yard work (and planted some plants from a neighbor). I also went through a bunch of stuff and got a box and big bag full to donate. Plus, Michael and I took Bella to the dog park.

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(That picture was actually taken by our dog walker in the backyard but it’s too cute not to share.) The dog park was packed with dogs because it was so nice out! Bella had a blast running around playing and chasing dogs and there were two rambunctious puppies (one pitbull and one mutt) that were super spazzy and Bella loved them. They all had the same crazy energy.

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Once Bella was done playing (she stopped paying attention to the other dogs) Michael and I walked with Bella around the park. It’s a huge park with trails and a few different fields, there was even a fenced horse area! Crazy that this huge park is so close to our house and we had no idea.

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It was just a really nice way to spend the afternoon–sunshine, blue skies, fall leaves and a nice walk.

Back to the food. I was under my calorie goal every day for the weekend AND I had some leftover Halloween candy too. It just goes to show that I just do not do well with restriction and moderation is what works. For weeks I tried to restrict and NOT eat any of the foods that I deemed on my “no list”. No pizza. No dessert. No “fun” foods. Just eat whole foods, fruits and vegetables. But denying myself these things just made me want them more and made me feel more miserable and frustrated with my lack of progress. It just goes to show you how much of weight loss is MENTAL.

I haven’t weighed myself to check in for two weeks. I will do it this week and see if I’ve made any more progress.

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