FitLife: Holiday weight

Bernie Barania
Posted 11/21/17

Don’t Feel Bad – You’ll Gain Weight

Yes, I said you will gain weight.

Not exactly the words you want to hear if you’re trying to shed the extra pounds. But it should be no surprise from …

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FitLife: Holiday weight


Don’t Feel Bad – You’ll Gain Weight

Yes, I said you will gain weight.

Not exactly the words you want to hear if you’re trying to shed the extra pounds. But it should be no surprise from Thanksgiving Day to New Year’s, most Americans put on the most weight. This, from a 2016 study in the New England Journal of Medicine that showed, in three different countries, weight gain occurred within 10 days after national holidays.

Besides some minimal pounds gained on Christmas Day, the study showed “significant weight gain was also observed around other major holidays in each country,” including Thanksgiving and New Year’s in the United States. On average over the entire three-month period in the U.S., participants gained around 3.3 pounds. Ouch!

Let’s See What Happens

After reading the study, I want to test this and see if I gain weight. I won’t change my diet, eating habits, or fitness activities. And for the record, my current weight is 162 lbs. All things being equal as any other month for me, let’s see how much I weigh on January 1, 2018.

Meanwhile, as we wait for this real-time experiment, here are some things I gathered to help you beat the holiday weight.

Four Ways to Tame the Nom-Nom-Nom-Nom

1) Start with a small red plate. Eating from a small plate immediately limits your food quantity. It is a visual reminder to go slow and reduce your intake. Furthermore, studies show that a festive red plate encourages fewer servings as well. Maybe the color red has the obvious stop sign effect.

2) Splurge from the get-go. Go ahead and knock out the good stuff. Enjoy every bite because if you deny yourself now, it might lead to temptation later. Still, be picky and savory, and just because it is served doesn’t mean you need to eat it. Remember, you and your nosh are likely to end up on social media for the world to see anyway. Make it look superb!

3) Eat before you eat. Feeling starved before the “big meal” just makes stuffing yourself too easily. Contrary to mom’s old tale, you won’t ruin your dinner by eating some nuts, fruits, cheese, or healthy snacks before you eat. And as soon as you sit down, do order and drink water first.

4) Schedule your WOW. WOW is my acronym for Workouts of the Week. Your meal may be over an hour or two – or more – with thousands of calories, but you still have more time to plan workouts and burn even more calories. Don’t forget walking the mall, parking far away from stores, and long walks, all count for calorie burning activity.

Get Over the Guilt

Feeling guilty about overindulging after a big delicious meal happens. It’s like buyer’s remorse: “Why did I do that?” or “I’m going to pay for this later.” OK, gaining weight over the next three months is real and likely to happen. So instead of pre- or post-food guilt, the fact you know what will happen might just help you feel more festive because you are in control.

...and let’s see how much control I have come weigh-in day on January 1.

Share your own FitLife story here. Email or contact me at Facebook: Clay Today Newspaper. Instagram @berni3trirun @claytodaynewspaper #claytoday #claytodayfitlife #fitlife


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