Do This To Avoid Holiday Weight Gain #Monday Motivation

Already feeling the Halloween candy weight gain creeping up on you? Pants a little snug? Has the cold weather already you couched for the winter?

Me. Too.

Feeling both lazy and determined to not gain any weight during the holidays and winter months, I turned to the interwebs for 'fast easy ways to lose weight and keep it off'. Below are 12 easy ways actually lose weight over the holidays and still eat off the dessert table. Most of all, these tips help you make small steps towards big sustainable, lifelong results!

1. Hydration is KEY!  You hear it all the time, Aim for eight glasses of water a day. At the very least, have a glass of water before and with EVERY meal. This help's curb calorie intake and boost metabolism by 3%! Also, your skin will thank you. Staying well-hydrated benefits you inside and out. 

2. Stop eating dinner before it's ready. Tasting the sauce is one thing, tasting everything, every step of the way, while sneaking handfuls of cheese, nuts, crackers and anything else in reach is straight up skinny jean sabatoge.  Studies show snacking while cooking can lead to 200 extra calories. TWO-HUNDRED!  Before you snack on the shredded cheese or bread, take a big gulp of water. If that doesn't work, take another gulp of water. 

3. Find a Friend. It's so much easier to work out of a friend guilts you into it. Find a friend to meet you once a week for a yoga/pilates/Zumba class at least once a week. Gradually work your way to three classes a week--with or without your friend. 

4. Stop the snack attack before it starts. You already know the mid-day rut is going to hot you like a ton of bricks, why not stop it before it starts with a little pre-party planning. First of all, try to pinpoint the time. Does your mid-day rut crash in like clockwork? Then break the vicious cycle by eating before it starts. Keep healthy snacks at your fingertips like fruit, nuts or protein/fiber bars. The second you feel the rut setting in, stop and snack on something healthy so you're not ready to trade your soul for the Little Debbie in the vending machine.  TIP: Keep healthy snacks at eye-level in the refrigerator and kitchen counter. 

5. Set small goals- Studies show achieving even the smallest goal, is enough to propel the person forward to the next. While setting large lofty goals can set you up for an almost immediate failure. Don't let that happen.  Focus on two pounds a week, not losing twenty pound total. 

6. Diet is the dirtiest four-letter word of them all- Jullian Michaels said it best when she said,

"Everyone's like: 'Give up carbs!' 'Give up fat!' 'Wait, no, now I'm taking pills!' None of are manageable long-term—and they wreak havoc with your metabolism. Because you're either starving yourself or you're cutting out a major food group. Then you go back into the weight-gain mode, but it's even worse, because your body has adjusted to all that crazy fad crap."

My motto: Diets end. Healthy lifestyles last. Small steps will lead to a healthy forever.
our laLean lunch meats like turkey or chicken, packed into a whole grain pita with lots of veggies for lunch and you just might not launch your usual 3pm assault on the vending machine.

Did you know:  One less bite saves about 75-calories a day or 8 pounds weight loss a year! So if you're full and trying to be polite and clean your plate, don't! This theory always makes me think of my grandmother. She once told me, A Lady always leaves her last bite. It's stuck with me forever, and something I actually do practice. Especially when eating out.

7. Citrus slashes cortisol. Good ol' Vitamin C inhibits the production of cortisol, a hormone that essentially tells your body to store fat. 

8. When you feel Snacky, ask yourself, Am I really Hungry? 
Studies show food cravings pass in about 10 minutes, so call a friend, paint your nails or knit an afghan until the craving passes. If you are just feeling snacky out of boredom. Set a timer, telling yourself you can eat in ten minutes. In the meantime, DRINK WATER! 

9. Can the crap! Clean out your pantry of all trans fats and unhealthy sugars and swear them off!  Don't let that shit cross your threshold again starting 2017. See how long you can last. The goal is to  create a healthy grocery store within your kitchen to make healthy choices easy.

10. Stand and deliver results. Standing burns 1.5 more calories than sitting. Reason #44 to stand while on the phone, checking email or playing Candy Crush.

11. Portion control is key. It's as easy as considering this before every meal: Think of eating the portion for the size you want to be; Small, Medium, Large or Extra Large? The make a plate accordingly.  

TIP: When you finish each meal, brush your teeth! Studies show people were much less likely to snack after dinner once their teeth were brushed.

12.  Create Accountability. Be accountable for the choices you make regarding your chuld's school clothes. I am a HUGE fan of weekly weigh-ins. In fact, I think that has a lot to do with why Weight Watchers has been such a successful program. Combine weigh-ins with the magical things "Smart Scales" are capable of these days, and you've got a true quantifiable picture of your health and weight loss.  I LOVE the Easy@Home Digital Bluetooth Body Fat Smart Scale (with App for iOS and Android!) 

April is an award-winning writer and blogger. Her work has been published in over ten countries and four languages. From books to newspapers, to print/online magazines and everything in between, you can find her work. For more on April, Visit