Halloween is really scary when it comes to tempting treats. Sugar is addicting and before long, you may feel like a bloated pumpkin by the time the goodie bags are gone. Wasn’t it just summertime like a minute ago?
Here’s a few strategies you can employ now so you don’t go overboard on Halloween and the ensuing party season.
1) Get in a great workout before it’s time to party or take your goblins t-o-t’ing. Either on All Hallow’s eve the morning of, hit the gym ir go for a good run / ride or whatever gets your endorphins pumping . Rev up your metabolism with a pre-workout snack (half of Cliff Bar, small protein & berry shake, egg whites & veggies, etc.) and some protein with a fiber rich good carb right after. You’ll feel less like scarfng down everything you see at the party or in your goodie basket if don’t starve yourself all morning.
2) Drink more to eat less. Sometimes we crave starchy or high carb foods when we’re thirsty. So keep yourself well hydrated all day.
3) Dance and play games if you’re at a party. The activity will keep from thinking about eating. If there’s games going on…. play play play! If you’re the host, plan on fun activities like bobbing for apples or pumpkin tossing… Yes, they do that somewhere in the mid-west!
4) Exercise your food options. This is the season of the harvest. Be sure to keep all kinds of veggies and fruits around. Make baked sweet potato chips, or roasted squash, baked apples with cinnamon. Not everything has to be a pie this time of year!
5) Watch out for over starching! The one diet tip my mom ever taught me was thanks to her being a diabetic… avoid eating 2 starches in the same meal. If you’re drinking beer, skip the bread and corn on the cob. If you’d rather have bread or pasta, step away from the Stella (beer). If you must, try to go half and half. Half of a portion of pasta and half of a beer. Yeah, that does sound like an exercise in deprivation, but it’s not. The average American eats portion sizes much larger than the rest of the (less pudgy) populated countries. My trick: use mini plates, bowls and cups.
6) Hung over from sugar or booze? Your head may be spinning, but as soon as possible, you’re legs should be too. You gotta move and sweat to help metabolize the gunk out of your body.
7) Give your system a reset break if you’ve overdone it at a party. I’m not a fan of regular fasting or what some people call “cleansing,” but I do understand why it has certain benefits. My grandmother did it once a month. I recommend getting plenty of water and veggie juice. If you’ve been working hard on your muscle building workouts, then eat some egg whites too. If you suffer from hypoglycemia eat light but play it smart by checking with your doctor beforehand.
8) Get your z’s. We’re already more tired when the nights get longer, so go with the flow. Research has shown that hunger hormones balance out in your favor when you get more sleep. In one well documented study, people who slept closer to eight hours a night had lower levels of the hunger hormone ghrelin and higher levels of leptin. That’s what you want because higher ghrelin levels make you feel hungry and low levels of leptin signal your body to have a bigger appetite.
9) If all these fail, get professional help! This is the perfect season to hire a personal trainer or health coach to help you with behavior modification and to create healthier lifestyle habits.
If you have other strategies to add to my list please post your comments below!