(CARLSBAD, CA) – The results are in. The average American gains one to two pounds during the holiday season. That’s not so bad, right? Wrong!
The problem isn’t just that the average American gains a couple of pounds, according to a study conducted by the National Institute of Child Health and Human Services (NICHD) and the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK). The real problem is that this weight is never lost. Americans gain weight each holiday season, maintain that weight throughout the year, and then put on more pounds the next holiday season. Gain two pounds every winter, and that equals 20 pounds in ten years.
How do we stop the cycle? The first step is to be realistic. It’s not likely that you will lose a large amount of weight over the holidays. So, making drastic calorie cuts is probably not a viable solution. Instead, set a personal goal of maintaining your current weight through the end of the year. Make it your personal mission not to gain excess pounds.
Of course, avoiding holiday weight gain is often easier said than done, right? That’s why Jazzercise Founder and CEO Judi Sheppard Missett offers five simple questions to ask yourself this holiday season to keep weight gain at bay.
1. What is my plan? Before the holidays even begin, create a plan. Mark your calendar with pre-set appointments for your exercise sessions. Decide on your menus ahead of time, and head to the produce section of your grocery store to stock-up on fruits and leafy greens.
2. How can I get my co-workers to help out? Office settings can be a catastrophe for nutritional eating. So, talk to your colleagues ahead of time. Ask everyone to agree that fattening desserts and sugary treats will be kept in one section of the office only. That way, you can easily avoid the route of temptation.
3. Why am I attending this party? When you think about it, you generally don’t attend a party strictly for the food. You’re there to spend time with your friends and family. So, do exactly that! Focus on socializing. There’s no reason to make three trips to the buffet when you’re engrossed in calorie-free conversation.
4. Am I getting my five-a-day? Eat five or more servings of fruits and vegetables every day. The fiber in these low-calorie foods will give your stomach a full sensation, so you’re less likely to chow-down on cakes, candies, or crackers.
5. What are my favorite indulgences? It’s okay to have a tasty treat now and then. If you deprive yourself of everything, you’re more likely to binge in a moment of weakness. So, pick your favorites, and allow yourself those indulgences this holiday season. Don’t waste calories on a vending machine bag of chips when what you’re really craving is mom’s homemade cherry pie.
Jazzercise, created by Judi Sheppard Missett, is the world's leading dance-fitness program with more than 7,800 instructors teaching 32,000 classes weekly in the U.S. and around the globe. Since 1969, millions of people of all ages and fitness levels have reaped the benefits of this comprehensive program, designed to enhance cardiovascular endurance, strength, and flexibility. For more information on Jazzercise go to jazzercise.com or call (800)FIT-IS-IT or (760)476-1750.