By the time you read this you will almost be through the entire holiday season! And with all the extra entertaining and get togethers with friends and family, we know that the reality is that most functions involve food, tasty treats and festive cheer! And I hope that you enjoyed these moments with your loved ones!

In a perfect world you would have moderated the excess however by doing all those things you know to do (hints below) in order to mitigate the damage that can happen in this celebratory month!

So as we head into the New Year we think to new beginnings. How do we make those resolutions something that we can stick to? Given that the number 1 resolution is to lose weight, and staying fit and healthy is also in the top 5, how can we make a plan for success while the parties continue?

I just gave away the trick actually. The key to success is to make a plan! With a plan, we can remove the stress and avoid the pitfalls of overeating and under exercising. So, let me provide some hints for the continued party season, but even more importantly one could argue, the remainder of the winter!

Party Season:

– eat a small healthy snack before going to the party, a low sugar yogurt, a bowl of low sodium soup, an apple, or some veggies and always, a big glass of water

– when at the party, use a small plate, load up with veggies, but try a little bit of everything so you don’t feel deprived but do avoid anything fried

– stay away from the food area and find someone interesting to have a conversation with! Before you know it the food will be put away.

– when being served by hosts, insist on smaller portions and tell them that you aren’t a “sauce” person!

– don’t start a diet at this time of year, seriously!

– have a glass of water between each alcoholic drink or be the designated driver

– learn to recognize if you are eating for hunger, or simply eating because it’s there

– eat extra clean the day after a big party!

– try to make some of your get togethers be activity based instead of food/drink driven such as skiing, hiking, tobogganing

After the season is done…

– get back to a schedule with working out immediately

– get out of the desert habit by choosing yogurts and fruits or a piece of dark chocolate after dinner to satisfy that craving

– make sure you get outside everyday to avoid the winter blues which makes it more difficult to stick to healthy choices

– make your new years resolutions realistic and write them down, with exact goals and dates for completion. Put it somewhere that you will see it everyday and plan your reward for when you achieve your goal!

– ask for help and support from your friends/family. Hire a personal trainer/coach that can put you on a plan and keep you accountable.

And so now that you have a plan, I wish you all a Wonderful Holiday Season filled with friends and family and love and laughter!