Winning the Holiday Marathon: Quick tips for enjoying the holidays and starting the New Year right.
For many, the holiday season becomes a marathon event of shopping, cooking, parties, mile-long to do lists, and more cooking, eating and shopping. It’s so easy to succumb to the stress, and throw low-carb eating and consistent exercise to the wayside until the New Year. Don’t do it. To help strengthen your resolve, here are some quick ways to win during the final holiday stretch while setting the stage for success in January:
Have a low-carb recipe exchange. It is easier to stay on track during this hectic time of the year if you connect with some of your other friends or family members doing Atkins (or visit the forums at Atkins.com) and share your favorite low-carb holiday recipes. You can also use this as an opportunity to add variety to your weekly meal plans, so you have some new, delicious recipes to look forward in between the holiday parties and dinners. When you have a whole new arsenal of low-carb recipes to try, you will be even more prepared to attack your New Year’s weight loss goals in January as well.
Give the gift of health. Has your experience with Atkins not only helped you look and feel better, but also encouraged you to make some other positive lifestyle changes? It is time to share the love. The New Atkins for a New You book and cookbook make great last-minute presents or you can even use Atkins bars and shakes as stocking stuffers. You can share your passion for exercise by giving pedometers and other home-gym equipment to your friends and family, or even a trial session with a personal trainer or a week of exercise classes at a gym.
Keep a food journal. This is another quick tool that serves as a gentle reminder of what you are actually eating. This is especially helpful if you have a full schedule of holiday festivities. By planning your meals and snacks, and deciding in advance what treats you may decide to have a small taste of, you will be less likely to succumb to temptation.
Express gratitude. When the list of presents to buy or parties to attend seems insurmountable, take a moment to count your blessings. Jot down one or two things each day that make you grateful, and keep in mind that it is the people and experiences in your life that are important.
Take ten for yourself. Taking a little time for yourself will rejuvenate your spirit and your body, and give you the energy you need to tackle the rest of your holiday to do list. This can be as simple as squeezing in a quick exercise session, savoring one of your favorite low-carb meals while reading a chapter of the book you have been trying to finish, scheduling a massage or going to a must-see movie with friends. Tired of all that cooking? Take the evening off and heat up one of Atkins’ new delicious low-carb frozen meals.
Look to the future. Although you may have simply been focused on maintaining your weight over the holidays, it’s never too early to brainstorm about what you want to accomplish in the coming year. Start thinking about your weight loss goals, and goals you want to accomplish in other areas of your life. Write these initial goals down, and work on fine-tuning them as the year draws to a close.