How I lost 12 pounds during the holidays surrounded by food! Healthy recipe ideas, tips, my goals for continued weight loss, and a new fitness challenge.
Well, let me start by saying, for 10 years I have struggled with my weight and new potentially serious health problems motivated me to take action.
So I set out a plan well before the New Year and managed to get through the holidays healthier…and if I can do it during the hardest time of year, anyone can do it any time of year!
Because I really have no willpower, seriously. I love to cook and eat…
We all know what happens during the holidays. For me it started with Halloween, 400+ pieces of candy to hand out and give away the extra pieces before I gobbled them up, holiday recipe testing for Delicious Table (there is a lot of ingredients and leftovers around here!), the Thanksgiving feast and those leftovers, dinners out with friends, our annual family Christmas party, friends Christmas parties, business luncheon events, my wedding anniversary mini vacation, nights out with the gal pals, the 250+ cookies I baked for gifts, and the sugar cookies our amazing neighbors delivered to us.
You get the picture, it’s like a constant barrage of incoming calories.
It isn’t easy to say no, resist a bite, and avoid all this delicious food during the holidays.
So… I approached the holidays differently this year.
What I decided to DO:
~First I changed my eating habits starting 9/21/17 (healthier choices & tracking calories)
~Next, I challenged myself to hike/walk 100 Miles during the holidays (10/31/17 – 1/1, 2018
~reduced my processed sugar intake
~ate mostly a plant-based diet, with clean lean meat proteins
~watched my calories (1600 calories daily), carbs, and sugar on My Fitness Pal (iPhone app)
~tracked hikes/walks on – Map My Walk (iPhone app)
~and yes, I allowed myself treats as long as they were in my calories, carbs, and sugar limits for the day
~I lost 12 lbs (late Sept 2017 – Jan 1, 2018)
~a dramatic drop in my blood sugar levels that shocked my Dr., a significant drop in my cholesterol, and blood pressure at normal levels
~major improvements in my vitamin D and B12 levels
~the last 2 weeks of December, I pretty much went off my eating plan by choice and didn’t gain any weight < isn’t that awesome?
What I Learned:
~hike/walking 100 miles in 100 days isn’t too hard, just keep at it!
~was I perfect? ah no, but I set a goal and focused on it daily
~good workout shoes are important, buy 2 pairs (on sale) and take care of your feet!
~walking with friends or a start a hiking group, it is fun.. try your local hills, trails, desert, beach, etc.
~on #hikewalks, wear a hat, sunglasses, use a light backpack to carry small water bottles and listen to good music if walking/hiking alone, it makes the time go by faster
~slow steady weight loss is really good, losing a 1 lb a week is what you want
~you will gain some muscle weight (thus that scale stays put) which is ok, muscle burns more calories
~set a goal (and post it on FB to keep you accountable) like a #hikewalk of say 100 miles? It is fun, and your friends will cheer you on
~you can turn your health around very quickly; my BMI, blood pressure, cholesterol, and blood sugar were all at unhealthy levels. They are now coming into healthy ranges, although I still have some more work to do Dr. B, Dr. L, and Dr. S! : )
~eating foods or beverages with any kind of sugar made me crave even more sugar ~ this was a revelation for me!
~eating carbs made me crave more carbs, like pizza, sub sandwiches, or pasta ~ another light-bulb moment
~when I eat sugar now, I don’t feel great at all, it puts me in a fog and makes me want more sweets and treats < not good
This is a healthy holiday salad I created this year…
~You can lose weight during the holidays!
~You can turn your health around in 100 days.
~Healthy feels good.
~I will keep going all of 2018
~Please join in the #healthy2018challenge here on Delicious Table
The 2018 Plan:
~mostly plant-based eating, with clean lean meat proteins
~watch sugar intake, low sugar approach
~watch carbs, low carb approach
~learn to cook new healthy fast recipes in my Instant Pot (and share them with you!) Yay : )
~develop more meatless, low sugar, low carb recipes for Delicious Table
~appear at the gym 4 x per month, I literally forgot the name of my gym~ don’t laugh, and take a weekly spin, water aerobics, or cardio weight class
and train and walk for a MARATHON IN 2018! (26.2 miles all in one day, or 6.5 hours or so according to my friends who have done many) This is a scary goal, but I am going for it!
~when you make one of our healthy recipes, post pictures on Facebook or Instagram and tag it with #healthy2018challenge
~challenge yourself to do hike walks, set a goal, and tag us with #hikewalk on Facebook or Instagram
2018 Let’s DO THIS!
All The Best Dishes,