You’ve finished your shopping and wrapped all of your gifts (for the most part, at least). You’re ready to wind down with family and get into the holiday spirit!

We say that the holidays are a magical time of year, but the fact is — there is no magic at play. We each work hard to make the season exciting and festive. That is why this period is also associated with being busy and stressed out.

Whether the holidays mean rest and relaxation or running around like crazy preparing for relatives to arrive, don’t forget why you’re doing it. Whichever holiday you celebrate, reflect on the ‘magic’ that you have created yourself:

  • You have a home to celebrate in and maybe you’ve even decorated it beautifully
  • You have your family and friends, whether you are with them in person or in spirit
  • You have food prepared with love
  • You are strong, fit and healthy
  • You are a part of communities that inspire you such as your work, gym and of course Team WAG!

After all, it’s only once a year and it will pass you by in a second. Don’t miss an opportunity to feel joy and make memories.

All this being said, the Holiday season usually means getting together to break bread over a hearty meal. There is no reason for you not to enjoy the festive meal. There is also no reason to put your WAG goals on hold so that you can overindulge. It is possible to have your cake and eat it too!

If you’ve already got the WAG Holiday Guide and have been navigating this food silly season like a pro, good work! You really deserve a pat on the back. Here are a few reminder tips to help keep you on track.

Do Some Exercise

Go for a walk, run or do a short bodyweight workout in the morning. It’s a great way to de-stress and mentally prepare for the big gathering.

Plan Ahead

Which foods do you know your family will be serving? If your aunt always cooks a turkey and your parents usually bring the potato salad, then you know you’re good for some protein, carbs and fats. Try planning out the foods you’re going to eat in advance so that you have a good idea of how much of each dish you can fit.

Eat Something First

It’s tempting to hoard your macros for the main event, but being really hungry is really dangerous. When you’re hungry you put a strain on your willpower and increase your chances of overeating. Eat something filling, but macro-friendly beforehand. Think egg whites, strawberries, cherry tomatoes, green leafy vegetables and calorie-free drinks like carbonated water, calorie-free sodas or tea.

Bring a Dish

Bring something to share that you know everyone will love and that you can load up on. Browse through the 8 Days of Thanksgiving Recipes on the WAG blog for perfect holiday dishes that you can share. The Cauliflower Mash was a hit at Thanksgiving!

Protein and Vegetables First

Load your plate up with proteins (preferably lean) and vegetables first. Once your plate looks relatively full, go back and fill in the small spaces with small portions of the foods that are less macro-friendly. This will help you to make smart portion-controlled decisions and will fill you up, leaving you less tempted for seconds.

If You Don’t Love it, Leave it

Before loading up your plate with sides and desserts, take 20 extra seconds to decide if you really want them. If it isn’t something you’re swooning over and you’re only putting it on your plate out of convenience, then don’t waste your macros on it.

Always Have a Drink

Even if it is just a glass of water, having a drink in your hand or nearby makes it easy to refuse offers of calorie-dense drinks like alcohol, soda and egg nog by saying, “no thank you, I already have a drink.”

Enjoy these next few days with your loved ones, embrace the break from the craziness of your daily routine and come back refreshed.

From all of us here at Working Against Gravity, we wish you a merry and happy holiday!