Avoiding the Holiday Heft: December 15, 2011

Sandy Kerr is one of us.

“Oh, I let loose, I mean I want to try everything. I want to taste everything, you know I don’t want to pass up desserts either.”

With all the tasty temptations, it’s easy to overindulge.

“Everybody tends to overeat around the holidays. So I always tell people, you don’t have to try everything on the table,” says Heather Parker, an exercise specialist with Lee Memorial Health System.

All the holiday excess can really add up. By the time its all said and done you may be packing an extra then pounds on your frame.

A new study from the National Institute of Health found that of those ten pounds, one will stick with you, forever. It’s a minor gain that can add up over the years. Fitness expert Heather Parker says there are ways to cut corners and calories. First, pick your battles.

“Pick a few things that you really like and have those few things and don’t go back for seconds,” says Heather.

Another party trick is to eat before you go out, and be on the lookout for high calorie beverages.

“And not just drinking them one after another; 100 and 200, 300 calories. So just cutting it back or cutting it down a little bit helps,” says Heather.

If you’re too busy to get to the gym, try to get twenty minutes of exercise at home.

“Just do squats, lunges, some push ups against the wall or on the floor, sit ups a little Pilates, walking, vacuuming. Ten minutes in the morning and ten minutes at night,” says Heather.

You can even make a healthy habit out of a favorite holiday past time: shopping.

“I would say wear tennis shoes so you walk faster,” says Heather.

With these tips in mind, Sandy hopes to have a happy holiday, and not a hefty one.

“I try and be pretty good, otherwise I mean at my age you know retirement age I’d be out to here if I didn’t watch it.”