It’s no surprise that Americans pack the pounds on pretty heavy in December. I mean, who can resist the pies, the cakes and the cookies? The holidays are full of cheer, but end up full with regret too. It is possible to actually create healthy holiday habits and avoid the average 7-10 pounds we tend to pack on by following some very simple rules that can easily turn into lifelong habits.

Many people shy away from changing their lifestyle during the holidays because it seems too hard or nearly impossible. The reality is that it is in fact the best time to start change because if you can handle change during the holidays, then you can handle it at any time during the rest of the year.

Are you ready to get serious about your weight? Follow these tips to make it through the holidays:

1. Commit and Plan

You can’t reach your goal without a plan and you can’t stick to the plan unless you are serious and really ready to commit. You have to be absolutely honest with yourself and with your diet. There are many types of dieting plans or lifestyles changes you can make. You should search for something that you know you can stick to and can last a long time (this is where the soup diet or the lemonade diet need to sacked).

Most people can not out exercise a poor diet, so your best bet is to be most aware of your eating habits. The great news is that you live in a day in age with apps galore for tracking food and exercise. Pick a plan and then pick an app to track every last morsel that touches your lips (every last cookie and fruit cake needs to be accounted for here!)

2. Goals

Once you have a plan and make the commitment, you need a goal. It is great to have an overall goal, but it is better to have many smaller goals. It can be a daunting task to lose 20 – 30 or 50 plus pounds, but breaking these up into smaller sections is not so bad. Just start off with the first five and go from there.

3. Boost Results

Maybe at this point you are ready to commit and have a goal, but the actual plan is kind of freaking you out. That’s ok! Many people choose to boost their weight loss results with the HCG Weight Loss Program that we offer in our Scottsdale medical spa. The basic concept is that you will eat a very low calorie diet, while using an HCG supplement, which will help control your appetite. By following the plan provided by our provider, you can expect to lose anywhere from 15-20 lbs in just one month! That’s pretty amazing.

4. Rewards

In my book, you can’t have goals without rewards. The go-to reward most people want to pick is a sweet treat or comfort food. Here is where I beg you to pick something else. Rewards do not have to be food; we’re not dogs!

Treat yourself better and pick something you may not normally do for yourself. A pedicure or a new workout outfit might be worth pumping some iron for. Better yet, check out all the services we have to offer at Expert Aesthetix. Maybe you’ll enjoy a round of Botox after you lose the first ten pounds or maybe a microlaser peel is right up your alley. Whatever the reward, make it not food related, but something to spoil yourself with after all the hard work and dedication!

5. Tricks of the trade (eat an apple)

Just for fun, I like to use the apple trick when I am having hard time staying on track with my diet, especially during the holidays. This trick is super easy. All I do when I get hungry, especially if I know I am just bored, is just ask myself if I am hungry enough to eat an apple. If I am, then I eat the apple and down a tall, cold glass of water. If I am not willing to eat an apple, then I am not hungry. Nine times out of ten, I am no longer hungry after eating the apple and I’ve kept the doctor away for another day.

6. Accountability

Having a coach or an accountability partner is huge for success. If you can find a gym buddy or somebody that will help keep you in check, you will be much more likely to get results. If no one is watching what you’re doing, you are more likely to cheat or quit altogether.

7. Holiday Survival

No matter which method you pick to help shed some pounds, maneuvering through all the holiday parties, Christmas cookies and potlucks is a struggle for anyone. The best thing you can do during the holidays is plan and choose your battles. Be honest with what you are eating and seek professional help if you need a boost. You have the ability to be the person who doesn’t pack on the holiday pounds.

The holiday season happens every year, so be prepared to tackle the indulgences one cookie at a time. Choosing weight loss as another New Year’s Resolution is old and boring. You don’t need to live in regret or shame. You can survive the holidays by following these simple steps and turn them into good habits.

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