As the holidays approach, we will continue to offer practical tips to help you stick to your lifestyle goals – even in the face of temptation all around you! Obviously, a big part of your strategy will involve resisting too many sweet desserts, cheesy comfort foods, and calorie-packed party cocktails. But it is also possible to increase your calorie burn a bit, to help ward off weight gain from the occasional indulgence.

Stay reasonable. It can be difficult to guess how many calories a particular food contains, and most people underestimate the number. Use a calorie app or website to gain an understanding of the calories contained in a particular tempting dish or dessert. If you decide it’s worth it, you’ll be walking off those calories in the next few days.

Be prepared. Keep your walking shoes handy, and squeeze in an extra walk any time you get a chance. Take a brisk walk before getting dressed for work in the morning, walk around the field at your kid’s soccer practice, or zip around the office building on break. Even a ten-minute walk is ten extra minutes you weren’t doing before.

Carry weights. Reap a higher calorie burn from your walks by wearing ankle and wrist weights.

Start a new tradition. Get the whole family out for a neighborhood walk after meals. It’s a great way to spend time together, and it will do wonders for your metabolism.

Max out your weekend exercise time. Even with cramming a few extra walks into your daily schedule, weekdays don’t offer much flexibility. But on the weekend, you could take a two-hour hike or spend the day walking (and holiday shopping) at the mall.

Of course, upping your walking routine won’t make a large dent in your caloric intake if you give in to the holiday spirit too much! If you find the holidays to be particularly challenging, schedule an appointment with us to review your eating plan. We can help you identify potential solutions.