By Mike Podesta

The holidays are approaching and we plan to have a guilt-free holiday season. Don’t get me wrong, we plan to indulge in a lot of great meals. We will be consuming our share of main courses, side dishes and desserts but we’re not just focusing on the food. We will still continue our workout plans as usual. Yes, even on holidays.  Johnny will be doing his P90X workout routine and I will be running and increasing my time on the 30 Day Plank Challenge.

Here are a few more tips that will help ensure a guilt-free holiday season.

Watch Portion Size

Before filling your plate, survey the spread and then choose items you can only get during the holiday season. Try to layoff the bread and mashed potatoes. Choose smaller portions of more desirable foods such as turkey, vegetables, sweet potatoes, and pumpkin pie. Say no to a second or realistically, a third helping. Save some leftovers and bring them to work or school for lunch.

Eat Slowly

Take the time to enjoy your food. Take small bites and chew food thoroughly. Many of us, including myself, have been guilty of taking the opposite approach. Experts say by taking the time to slow down and enjoy your food it will leave you feeling full and satisfied. Foods such as fruits, vegetables, salads and whole grains help aide in the feeling full.

Be Practical

It is best to strive to maintain your weight during the holidays than to focus on weight loss. Remember, you’re not going to lose all the weight in one day. With so many temptations and busy schedules, it can be difficult to stay on a health program during the holiday season. Do your best to maintain your current weight.

Focus on Relationships

The holidays aren’t just about food, or even exercise for that matter. Take a step back and remember this is a time to focus on your relationship with family and friends. Food shouldn’t be the main focus during the holidays. Enjoy your time with friends and loved ones.

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Mike Podesta