Why You Shouldn’t Feel Guilty After a Splurge
The following article is from http://www.self.com/blogs/flash/2011/12/why-you-shouldnt-feel-guilty-a.html
Why You Shouldn't Feel Guilty After a Splurge
A sugar cookie here, a glass of eggnog there, a six-course meal followed by Irish coffee and chocolate pilfered from your nephew's stocking ... You're sure you gained at least 5 pounds in the time it took the mall to flip their "Christmas Eve Sale" signs over to their "Post-Holiday Blowout Sale!" signs, but there's no need to feel guilty about a littleholiday splurge. Here's why.
"If it's just one dinner -- or one day, even -- it's not a big deal," says Marjorie Nolan, RN, a personal trainer and spokeswoman for the American Dietetic Association. "You may be a little bloated or feel kind of heavy and blah, but one splurge is not going to affect your weight or your health in any significant way."
Phew, right? But that doesn't mean you should finish reading this and dive right into those leftover gingerbread treats.
"When it goes from one day or one dinner to three weeks of holiday indulgence because you can't stop eating the leftover cookies," says Nolan, "then it's actually impactful on your health."
But wait! That doesn't mean you should throw out all the food in your house and put yourself of a strict diet!
After a splurge, "Eat as normally as possible," says Nolan. "Don't skip meals or try to significantly cut back on what you'd normally eat." Trying to put yourself on an unrealistic regimen, she explains, is just going to set you up to eventually get too hungry and eat more at some point later in the day, especially if you have leftovers tempting you.
In addition to eating normally, try to eat a little bit "cleaner" this week, advises Nolan, sticking with leaner proteins, whole grains and more veggies than usual. If you pay a little more attention to what you're consuming (rather than how much you're consuming), you'll be in a good mentality for getting right back on track.
"You'll save yourself some calories," explains Nolan, but more importantly, by going into the week with the intention of making healthier choices, you'll stay motivated not to overindulge again too much, too soon.
Speaking of action, getting some exercise this week is a great idea, but don't go nuts between now and Valentine's Day.
"If you haven't been doing really intense workouts before, don't start them now," says Nolan -- you don't want to burn yourself out by setting unrealistic goals. Hit the gym, go for a run or brisk walk, but stick with the same level of intensity in this post-splurge week and work up from there. "Be realistic with the exercise program and frequency you set up for yourself," she adds, "and make sure you schedule it in."
No guilt, smart eating choices and a reasonable amount of exercise ... sounds like a great way to head into the new year!