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Plan IT!

We always have the “IT” option.  We can lose IT, maintain IT or gain IT (pounds that is).  The holidays are no different but they certainly do present some challenges we don’t have to deal with the rest of the year.   Many of us are presented with an over-abundance of food and not the most healthy choices to boot.  So what can one do?  Plan IT!

Whether you plan just one meal, one day or one week – making a plan ahead of time can help.  Decide what your plan of attack will be if you have a holiday party to attend.  One member suggested that you make one pass around the table of food so you can do a bit of recon.  Decide what you are willing to spend your points on ahead of time.  Fill up on the power foods of course but don’t forget to treat yourself (we don’t believe in deprivation) to some of the desserts or whatever your favorite weakness is.  Another trick I’ve often heard is eat something before you go to the party.  That way you aren’t so hungry when you get there and are less likely to eat too much.  Minimize the amount of alcohol (empty calories that really can rob you of your points) and don’t forget to keep plenty of water by your side.  Another member suggested after you make your plate step away from the table.  Go and socialize.  Talking to others can keep you from going back and filling up once you are already full.  Another member said – share IT.   If you really love desserts – share that slice of pie or cake with a friend, co-worker or family member.  That way you can have half the points and still enjoy yourself.

Remember no matter what your plan is, try to eat slower.  It takes the brain time  to catch up to the stomach and say it’s full.  Eat but then wait 20 minutes or so.  Then assess your fullness level.  Also this time of the year with heat on the environment is drier – you maybe thirsty and not really hungry.  Try drinking some water first and then see if that doesn’t satisfy you.

So whatever challenges you this holiday season make a plan (to lose, maintain, or gain) but more importantly don’t beat yourself up if you don’t stick to the plan.  Look at it as a learning experience especially if this is your first time trying to avoid all the goodies out there.  We are only human and even the most season veteran at the weight loss path will fall off the wagon on occasion.  Trick is they immediately dust themselves off and get back on.  Just keep moving forward with whatever plan you choose.

Happy Holidays to all!

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Additional Goodies

Got to thinking about what other holiday ideas you might want to get a WW member on your list.

Several things came to mind under Workouts

  • Fitbit – tracks your everyday steps, stairs climbed, calories burned, and more, motivating you throughout the day.
  • Up by Jawbone – track your steps, distance, calories burned, pace, intensity level, active vs inactive time, GPS routes and more.
  • Bath puffs for the shower after your workout

And one more for the cooks out there – the brand new Weight Watchers Points Plus Power Foods cookbook – a bit expensive here on Amazon.com but only $14.95 at your local Weight Watchers store

Hope some of these ideas help with your holiday shopping for the fit-minded on your lists.

Holiday Ideas For The WW On Your List

Do you have a friend or family member working the Weight Watchers program or just trying to make healthy choices in their lives?  Stumped as to what to get them for the holidays?  Here some suggestions that will hopefully help make your gift giving a bit easier.

For Everyone

For Workouts

  • Work-out clothes (tops, pants, shorts, socks, shoes)
  • Gift certificate for their favorite gym (for classes or personal trainer)
  • Small hand weights (if they are a walker and want to ramp up their workout)
  • Kettlebells
  • New gym bag
  • Toiletry bag for shampoo, soap, razor, etc.
  • Bottle to carry water during workouts
  • DVDs of Zumba, Kettlebells or Yoga workouts
  • Pedometer

For Cooks

But the most important gift you can give them is your support.  How about a jar full of hand written coupons like “Good for one walk around the track with you” or “Good for 2 hours to yourself – I’ll take care of the kids” or “Good for one vacuuming of the whole house”  or “Good for one fixing of dinner (promise to follow WW recipes)“.   Anything you can do to show support will always be greatly appreciated by anyone but especially someone on a weight loss/maintenance journey.

Wishing all of you very Happy Holidays!

The “Ouldas”

Shoulda, Woulda and Coulda.  They get us into trouble every single time.  Especially during the holiday season.  “I should finish my holiday shopping now…”  “I would love to do ____ but…..”  “If only I could get ____ done before…”  Many of us know these sentences as they run in a continuous loop in our heads this time of the year.  This adds to the stress and stress can lead to making bad choices which can lead to weight gain which can lead to….well you get the  idea.

I stopped myself this week from doing a shoulda.  I should have written this blog post long before now but I had a very busy week work-wise.  So I forgave myself and let it go.  Normally I would have stressed over getting this blog post done, I would have stayed up late (depriving myself of sleep – bad choice) and then gotten stressed which would have made me give into stress eating (another bad choice).  I do have a responsibility to my readers but more importantly I have a responsibility to myself.

This is a small stress compared to what most of us experience during the holiday season (decorating, shopping, family commitments, cooking, cleaning, visiting, etc.) so what can you do during this season to help you through those stressful moments?

  • Have someone on your side.  One member at last week’s meeting talked about one of her children being her cheerleader at home.  This child is really helping Mom to stay focused.  Find a friend or family member who can be your cheerleader.
  • Identify your stressors.  Knowing them ahead of time is part of the solution.  If you know certain people or situations add stress to your life you can be a bit more prepared for it.
  • Lower your expectations.  Our leader, Pat, shared that often she finds her expectations are what set her up for failure.  Try not to go into a situation/event with expectations so that when it doesn’t go according to your plan you aren’t stressed or disappointed.
  • Ask for help.  Not unlike that child who is a cheerleader ask others to help you.  It can be as simple as letting them know you are working the Weight Watchers plan so they can cheer you on or ask them to help you by not bringing certain tempting dishes during the holiday seasons.
  • Offer help too.  Sometimes by offering something of yourself you are not only helping the other person but yourself in the process.  It can help to remind you of your plan and your goals.
  • Think positive.  Negative thoughts can undermine all your good work you’ve done so far (especially if you are just starting out).  One member shared that her normal walking buddy and her made a pack.  Instead of gossiping or complaining they were only going to talk about positive things on their walks.  They went from normal 15 min walks to 45 mins because they were so caught up in sharing the positive side of things!
  • Forgiveness.  If you find that you are stressed and make some unhealthy choices – acknowledge it, forgive yourself and let it go.  We are all human and we are all going to slip and fall from time to time.  Trick is to not let those occasional slip ups deter you from your ultimate goal.

Don’t forget to take time out to enjoy the decorations (take a walk and enjoy the houses in your neighborhood), time to enjoy the company of friends and family (if you used to do cookie bake/swap why not continue the tradition this year but make them all Weight Watchers recipes), or take time to reflect after the last gift is wrapped and count your blessings (you have Weight Watchers,your leader and the great members on your side).  I hope you can all take time to enjoy the holiday seasons a bit and leave the “ouldas” out of your holiday this year!