5 Things to do to lose weight after Christmas
Christmas often brings some extra indulging, which can lead to up to 10lbs fluctuation on the scale. Not all of this will be be body fat – a large portion will be water, but it can leave you feeling sluggish and your clothes feeling a bit tight. Here are 5 things you can do to get that scale weight down, and your clothes feeling less snug:
1. Get back to your normal eating routine. Don’t let Christmas turn into a month long gorge fest. If there are chocolates, cheese, alcohol and Christmas food lying around it’s all to easy to fall in to bad eating/drinking habits, which really will lead to fat gain. It’s not necessary to get rid of the food in one go. Get back to a normal routine of 3 healthy meals a day, and build in some of the leftover treats as snacks through the week. Never develop the “I’ll eat it all now and then it’s done” mindset – there’s no need, and you’ll end up in a worse position. Moderation is key.
2. Prioritise protein and veg. Make protein and veg your priority with meals. Add a clenched fist size portion of carbs (potato, rice, pasta, cous cous, oats) and you’ll give your body the nutrients it needs to start feeling less sluggish and bloated. Protein and veg will also help you stay full and bring your blood sugars back under control – after huge amounts of calorie laden sugary foods your appetite can be sky high.
3. Drink plenty of water/sugar free squash. After a few days of alcohol and processed foods your body will be crying out for more hydration. Start your day with a large glass of water/sugar free squash (even if that is alongside your morning coffee), and make sure you drink more through the day. Being properly hydrated will make it easier to shed some of the water weight that you will be carrying, will help to bring down that bloated tummy, and will help to control your appetite.
4. Don’t over restrict Avoid overly restrictive faddy diets. There is no need to eat like a rabbit, go keto, or try to eat “all good foods”. This approach to losing weight is a recipe for disaster. You’re unlikely to sustain it, and you’ll start the new year feeling deprived and miserable. Eat sensible balanced meals and track your weight/measurements over a couple of weeks. If you aren’t seeing changes, opt for lower calorie snacks like a piece of fruit or a high protein yogurt. Track again. If nothing changes look at portion sizes in your main meals. People that lose weight and keep it off rarely do extreme diets – these are the people that you look at and think are lucky because they can eat everything (this is simply because they take a sensible long term approach to eating…..)
5. Cut back on alcohol
I left this until last as I’m often told alcohol is non negotiable. The reality is, alcohol can be very calorific, it’s processed differently by your body to food, and it contains zero nutrients. If you are drinking all of your calories you leave no room for food calories – which means you’ll end up starving and likely having a little binge, or will see little progress with weight loss. If you choose to drink, understand what calories are in those drinks and drink with moderation. A large glass of wine is around 200 calories – the equivalent of a ring donut, mince pie, or half the average persons lunch. If you choose to drink alcohol, understand that this leaves less calories for the food your body needs – and you’ll likely have to eat like a rabbit to lose weight, rather than nice, enjoyable food.