The average person starts putting on weight in October, and the kilograms you gain between Halloween and Christmas can take five months to lose, according to recent Cornell University research.
That means it’s already been two months of weight gain you probably didn’t even realise was happening.
And chances are you’ll snack on some more Advent calendar/after dinner/Christmas cracker chocolates this week – and keep munching all the way to New Year’s Day.
Read more: 5 festive season food hacks to stop you eating til you feel bloated and guilty
Traditionally this time of year is when you give yourself excuses,” says Men’s Health Fitness Director BJ Gaddour. “You say, ‘I’ll gain a little bit now, and when the new year comes around, I can lose it.’”
But then you will need to work even harder to lose even more weight in a few months. You need a plan to curb holiday overeating now. That’s where Gaddour comes in.
Read more: The 6 real reasons you overeat
Here are his three cardinal rules for maintaining healthy eating and fitness habits during the holidays:
1. Plan your cheat days.
Schedule your indulgence days in advance, so you can put in plenty of work before letting loose. “If you know that the company Christmas party is going to be on a Tuesday, you need to make sure you’re dialed in with your nutrition the weekend before,” says Gaddour.
Read more: 5 things you need to know before your next cheat meal
2. Always break a sweat before a big meal.Pre-game your Christmas feast with a killer workout that will make you feel less guilty for the calories you're putting in.
Read more: 5 body weight exercises you should do before your christmas feast
3. For every treat, do 100 burpees.You can either perform them all at once, or scatter them throughout the day. “This will get you in the habit of taking into account what’s coming into your body,” Gaddour says.
Read more: Feel the burn in just 4 minutes with this insane burpee workout
This article originally appeared on www.mh.co.za
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