It happens every year. Your weekends start to fill up with holiday parties and gatherings. Some you want to go to and… well… some you don’t. But you go anyway because of some adult obligation that you feel. A good friend of mine calls it “adulting”.
It happens to all of us.
And each holiday season that passes usually adds about 5 – 10 pounds to our waistlines.
My clients often share with me that they have some sort of anxiety about these holiday parties. They want to go and socialize, but they don’t want to stuff their face with sugary or fatty foods and feel like crap afterward.
Even though they want to go they don’t want all their hard work to go down the drain. They worked hard for their results and don’t want the holidays to spoil everything.
I get it. I used to feel the exact same way.
In fact, for a long time I just avoided going to holiday parties at all. Then I realized I was missing out on a lot of fun and memory-making with my friends and family. Over the years I learned a few tricks that worked for me and that is what I want to share with you today.
Here Are 5 Holiday Party Hacks That Allowed Me to Go to Parties Without Gaining Extra Weight
- I ate beforehand. I used to attend these parties and eat the food there as my meal. Then it dawned on me to eat beforehand and eat nothing at the party or eat something small like some fruit or veggies. Doing this saved me countless calories.
- I started asking the host if I could bring a dish to share. Almost every one said yes. So I brought some of my favorite healthy meals. I would make this the bulk of what I ate at the party. I would create a little label and list out the ingredients too. A lot of other party goers loved this and it made their night a bit easier too – especially if they had a food allergy.
- I started skipping the high calorie alcoholic drinks and went for the spritzers or mixed with diet pop instead. Calories from drinks are often forgotten about. It was easy for me to decrease my calories by making smarter choices instead of drinking what was in front of me (usually beer and wine).
- I became better at conversation. One of the main reasons I ate more than I wanted to at these parties was because I wasn’t super comfortable having small talk with random people. So hovering by the food table and picking all night seemed just fine. Once I figured this out it became clear that I needed to work on my party skills. One of the tricks I use is to always have a mental list of questions I can ask people to start or continue a conversation. “Tell me something good” is always one of my favorite conversation starters as people always smile and it starts a light-hearted conversation that isn’t about the weather.
- If possible, do some sort of an event or activity. It seems like all holiday parties involve standing around, eating, talking, and eating more. If you host the party, or if it’s at a venue you feel comfortable in, consider doing something different. Play board games during the party, take a hike and have a small picnic at the end, or do a coffee tasting/wine tasting party instead. The ideas are endless… just try to find a way to mix it up and do something different.
The holidays should be enjoyed. I’d much rather you have fun, be silly, and make memories than worry about gaining 5 pounds. But I also know that you worked hard for your results and this year you may be worried a bit more than usual about these parties.
So take these 5 holiday party hacks and enjoy your holiday season!
Maybe you’re looking to get a jump start on 2017. Maybe you’re ready to start a healthy lifestyle now. I don’t blame you and in fact, starting now will put you in a great position come the New Year.