Managing Healthy Goals and the Holidays.


With the holiday season in full swing, one thing I've been getting asked quite often is not what I want for Christmas, (am I too old for that?) but what it is I eat during the holidays. Based on their reactions, I know the answer I give people shocks them.

Because my answer is everything. I eat everything during the holidays.

I look forward to so many things this time of year and right up there with time spent with family and friends and the music, is food. Really, what would the holidays be without the food? Many holiday festivities, be it traditional or social, revolve around food and escaping from it is more or less impossible. I know for myself, there aren’t many holiday foods that I dislike, whether they are savory or sweet. And I don't refuse them either. 

Eating during the holidays used to be a great source of stress for me in the past. I was always worried that letting myself indulge would lead to constant overeating, because often times, it did. Because I was always so focused on being on a "diet," I was always banning "bad" foods. When the holidays rolled around and all these "bad" foods were in abundance, I would go to town. I would then feel defeated and instead of trying to start fresh, I would let this cycle of overeating continue well after the holidays had ended, with no apparent end (or change) in sight. 

I look back now and realize that I was just way too hard on myself, but that's often how we learn the best lessons in life. Through much trial and error, I finally learned how to successfully conquer the holidays and still feel healthy and manage my weight (and often even lose weight!) None of what I do is anything new or groundbreaking, but I have found it works great for me and who knows, maybe it will work for you too!

So these are the top five things that have worked for me:

I’m not kidding when I say there aren’t many holiday foods that I refuse. I love chocolate, and cookies, and cakes, and hot chocolate with lots of whip cream. I still pay attention to what and how much I am eating, but I do let myself indulge. This also prevents me from potentially overeating as I find the more I “ban” myself from eating something, the more I end up eating in the end. This gets rids of any cravings and usually once I have whatever it is, I don’t want it again.

In the past, I would eat cake and cookies at all random hours of the day. I would not just feel tired and groggy, but it ultimately would lead to (unnecessary) weight gain. If I know I will be going out to dinner where I will be having a bigger meal than usual, I will eat lighter during the day and won't be eating truffles or cookies mid-day. 

No matter what, I still make it a point to wake up and get my daily workout done. Working out helps me in a number of ways to achieving and maintaining my goals. Besides the obvious of keeping fit, it keeps me on track (even if I’ve “slipped,”) it stops me from overeating, (I worked out so hard this morning! I don't want to undo everything!) and it also reduces guilt if I do ("I worked out this morning! I’m allowed!" Reasoning that is to be used sparingly, but it works!)

If you haven’t been able to tell up until this point, the combination of sugar, butter, and flour are a heavenly one to me. However, when flour is involved, I can quickly become sick, cranky, bloated, and sluggish. So I swap some recipes in favor of those with ingredients such as almond flour, for a yummy but better for me alternative. Healthy food can be indulgent too!

This is probably the most important thing I have learned when it comes to the holidays and eating. So I may have missed a workout or enjoyed too much chocolate. IT’S O.K! Once I remind myself not to make it a habit and to just get back on track ASAP, all is right again. The thought alone makes the holidays much more enjoyable and much easier to maintain my goals.


  1. Great advice! Although when it comes down to it I have a hard time being super health conscious over the holidays! ;)

  2. This is great advice! I agree with you on the no deprivation thing–I'm going to have a cookie if I want a cookie!

    The Glossy Life

  3. Everything in moderation is key! These are great tips!

  4. I think I need to follow these tips. Everything in moderation! That'll be my mantra. <3