Wednesday, December 4, 2013

10 Minutes With a Trainer: Holiday Tips

by Josh Perez
If you're guilty of overeating during the holidays, here are some simple tips to keep in mind.

  • Drink water. People often mistake thirst for hunger, so next time you feel hungry, reach for water first. Water will also helps you feel full and elevate your metabolism. Some experts suggest sipping water (or loose leaf tea) just before you sit down to a meal or as you eat to add volume and weight.
  • Set realistic goals. Losing one or two pounds of fat a week is doable and healthy. Anything more and you could be losing muscle.
  • Count to 10. Studies suggest that the average craving lasts only about 10 minutes. So before caving in to your urge, give yourself 10 minutes. Use the time to tackle an item on your to-do list and it will keep you out of the refrigerator.
  • Eat more often. People who have kept their weight off and or body fat off for more than a few years tend to eat an average of five times a day. Light, frequent meals (still watch your calories) curb your appetite, boost your energy, improve your mood and even speed your metabolism.
  • Take one-third off. When you eat dinner out, reduce the temptation to clean your plate by setting aside one-third of your meal. Ask the server for a to-go bag, and take it home for lunch the next day. Try serving yourself one-third less at home too. This simple tactic could subtract more than 500 calories a day.
  • Go easy on the alcohol. Remember that alcohol is a source of calories and slows the liver function. A 12-ounce beer has 150 calories; a 3.5-ounce glass of wine, 85. A margarita packs a bigger caloric punch. Even worse offenders are creamy cocktails. If you’re being mindful of trying to lose weight, stick with water!
  • Relax! Some people binge when they’re stressed. A Yale University study found that women who secreted the most cortisol (a hormone released during stress) ate the most high-fat food after stress. The combination of cortisol and insulin prompts the body to store fat in preparation for possible starvation. So take a break, get a massage, mini vacation, or treat yourself to a nice present.
Josh Perez is been in the fitness industry for 12 years and has been involved with personal training, sports specific conditioning, athletic training, injury prevention, weight loss, muscle gain, endurance athlete training, and elite athlete conditioning. For the past 5 years he developed personal trainers and worked with them to grow and maintain their business so that they could be successful in this industry. Contact him at

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