Sunday, November 28, 2010

How to come out of your Thanksgiving Day Coma....

 Okay, so did you eat waaay too much Turkey, stuffing and pie like I did on Thanksgiving??
 Have you been eating leftovers for two days because you don't want them to go to waste? I hear you! Me too. 
  So now that we are feeling more stuffed than our turkey was, here are some tips to get you back on track this week....

1 Don't starve yourself for the next week....
 If you are feeling guilty that you probably consumed 3000 calories a day for the past 3 or 4 days and you think a great solution would be to eat very little for the next week, DON'T! Dropping your calories down to very low levels will bring your metabolism to a screeching halt! Whatever damage you did over the past few days should be put behind you. Start again fresh this week aiming for the calorie count that fits your activity level and weight loss goals.  ( It will probably be somewhere between 1500-1800 calories a day. Do not drop below 1200 calories!) If you are unsure how many calories you need to consume  Click here for calorie calculator
   Remember though, when you get the results, the calorie amount listed will be for maintaining the weight you are at. The heavier you are/and the more active you are, the higher your calorie needs will be TO MAINTAIN YOUR WEIGHT.  So the amount of calories that the calculator gives you may seem high. If you are over weight,  you can safely cut down your calories by 250-500 calories a day and workout to burn an additional 250-500 calories a day. This would give you a weight loss of between 1-2 lbs a week because 3500 cal is equal to 1 pound. Keep a food journal everyday and calculate the calories you consumed so that you can make sure you are not eating too much or too little.

2. Get back to Portion Control:
   One of the most important tools to keep your calorie count in line is portion control. Thanksgiving Dinner definitely encourages us eat Fred Flintstone size portions of everything! So it's important to size our meals back down to normal portions this week. Click here to read my blog about portion control

 3. Watch Your Sodium
  Chances are the stuffing, mashed potatoes and appetizers were loaded with sodium. This will definitely increase your water retention and make you feel as though you gained more weight than you might have. So pay close attention to the food you eat these next few weeks. Aim to keep your sodium intake to 1500 mg a day. In order to do this, you need to cut out all processed foods which are extremely high in sodium. Make soups and meals from scratch. If you are crunched for time, make meals in advance that you can eat throughout the week.

4. Avoid Alcohol
   Avoid drinking alcohol for the next week or so. (longer if you are serious about losing weight)

5. Avoid White Sugar and Refined Carbs
  You probably ate a lot of pie and potatoes this Thanksgiving. Your body sees them all the same... excess carbs which can be stored as fat. This week, be careful to watch your sugar and carb intake. Note that I am not saying to avoid all carbs. It's still important to eat complex carbs and fruit.  click here to read my blog about the difference between refined carbs and complex carbs. Make sure you eat complex carbs at breakfast and lunch and for your afternoon snack. If you are trying to lose weight, skip the grains at dinner and just have your protein and unlimited steamed veggies.

6. Eat Fiber!
  After having a couple very big meals back to back, there is a good chance your not feeling quite right today.... oh, you know what I mean. So be mindful of getting enough fiber this week. Aim for 25-35 grams a day. Go slow, because too much fiber, too quickly can give you excess gas and make you feel uncomfortable as well. You can find fiber in legumes,vegetables, fruit with the skin and whole grains. Beans, broccoli, oatmeal, raspberries and whole grain breads are a few examples.

7. Drink Plenty of Water
  It's not a cliche... Water is good for you. Period.
  It really helps your body perform at its best.
  Drink lots of water to help the fiber move everything through your body. Water will help you feel fuller so that you don't over eat this week. It will also help you feel energized for your workouts. Oh, by the way, drink water instead of soda!

8. Exercise!!!
 It's important that you fit in working out this week. It would also be a good idea to step it up a little. I know you're busy, but adding a couple strength training and cardio sessions to your week (you only need 30-60 minutes a day, it seems like a lot when you are busy but try to take the time you use to watch a tv show or mess around on facebook for something more positive for yourself...) will really help you burn calories and rev up your metabolism. It will also help you feel more energetic and less stressed during this busy time of year.

9. Get enough rest
 You were probably running around like a turkey with it's head cut off this past week. Cooking, cleaning, black Friday shopping...You will also be crazy busy for the next month. So it's important to get enough sleep so that your body can recover from the excess stress you are putting on it. Click here to read my blog about the connection between sleep and weight loss and tips to help you sleep better

 I hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving with your family and friends. We all deserve to eat a little too much yummy food sometimes. But now lets get back on track before Christmas comes around!!!!

Let me know if you need any extra support during this holiday season. I'll be glad to give you some specific advice if you send me an email!

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