Washington: Just because you’re going out for dinner with friends or family on the weekend doesn’t mean you have to gain those extra kilos.
According to an expert, if you plan ahead, you can fill your week with extra little bursts of exercise and cut back your calories here and there to counteract your high-calorie plans for the weekend and help maintain your weight through the holidays.
"There are a lot of different ways to try to increase your levels of physical activity in your daily routines," said Michael Berry of the Wake Forest University.
"During the holidays, you may be taking in extra calories and having less time for exercise, so it’s probably more important to add these types of activities daily. Remember, 500 calories can mean five miles of running," said Berry.
In addition to your normal exercise routine and physical activity, try taking the steps instead of the elevator or talking a walk at lunchtime - you can even take a five-minute walk every 30 minutes to burn some calories.
And, if you can, he suggested increasing your daily, 30-minute workout by about 10 minutes to help counteract the weekend’s indulgences.
Then you need to think about your buffet strategy once you get to the party, said Gary D. Miller.
"You won’t want to overindulge, but you don’t want to deny yourself, either. I’m all about living and having a good life, so keep things in moderation and don’t skip the things that bring us so much pleasure this time of the year," he said.
And when the holidays wind down, don’t despair if you’ve added a couple of pounds. Most research has said that you will pick up a pound or two, said Miller.
Just keep following your pre-holiday strategy of adding bursts of activity to your schedule every day and watch your calories for a month or so, and you should get back on track.