Sweater and hoodies…comfort food…warm coffee, tea & cider…boots…comfort food…scarves…crisp air & crisp leaves…comfort food…gorgeous display of colors & red (my fav color)…comfort foods…
Did I mention comfort food??
See for me, whether I am (re) losing weight or maintaining my weight, Fall/Winter are the hardest times for me. Now I did hit my goal weight & reach Weight Watcher Lifetime status in the fall but it’s always been a battle. I’m not a huge craver or sweets…it’s the savory that I like to get down with. Cheesy, crunchy, gooey…I’M IN!! Summer sure has its fights, like a lot of outdoor holidays, picnics and parties. But there are SO many great, healthy options during the summer. Endless fruits and veggies and GRILLING!! And drink wise this summer I was hooked onto diet Snapple and Crystal Light tea drinks which cost me no Points+ values. Unlike the delicious lattes and cocoa I want to consume…like…ALL THE TIME!!
It can be difficult to stay on track during this season if your trigger foods/drinks are the highlight. So here I have some of the tips and tricks that I have used over the years to help me not fall (haha…get it…I know, I know…I’m hilarious) too off track & sabotage my goals:
• This is my #1 rule…ENJOY!!!! I’ve preached this at SO many WW meetings…you have to let yourself ENJOY the season!! If you swear yourself off of that Pumpkin Spice Latte, or promise to not eat that homemade macaroni and cheese then you are just setting yourself up for a potential failure. PSL’s (that’s what all the cool kids are calling them now) may seem like crack, but they are not...they won’t ruin your life.
• MODERATION!! Enjoy, yes…but in moderation. Have that SLICE of pumpkin pie. Have that SERVING of chicken and dumplings. Indulge in A pumpkin or fall flavored drinkable treat ONCE a week. You can ENJOY these things when you practice MODERATION.
• How about LIGHTENING things ups!! Love homemade mac & cheese?? How about using a 2% milk cheese or replacing the whole milk with 1% or skim (I use Skim when I make mine and even the hubby can’t tell…and I make a MEAN mac & cheese). Or how about some more nutrient filled noodles. Getting that PSL?? Get it with skim milk, no whip. Fat free whip cream on the pie…use a can of pumpkin puree to make cookies or muffins. There are a lot of ways to lighten up your favorite cold-weather comforts.
• Stay ACTIVE! It can be hard to get outside and get your walks/runs in when the weather gets cooler. I live Central New York and we have one of the snowiest winters in the US. But we still get out. Invest in some proper clothing. Get something to modify your shoes for when it’s icy out. Don’t want to go outside? Well if you have a treadmill now would be the time to dust that thing off. How about buying a new workout DVD that you can do right at home? Invite some friends over…have some drinks and do some drunken Yoga or whatever those PiYo things are all about. If you are going to let yourself indulge in more fat & calorie filled up foods you really should make sure to keep your workouts filled up too.
• Sweaters…they can be your friend or your enemy. DRESS for your body…do not hide your body. For many of us, losing/maintaining weight is a mostly mental battle. Sometimes we see all these adorable, comfy sweaters and just buy, buy, buy. But the sad truth is that not every sweater is right for everybody. If you start dressing slumpy, you will feel slumpy. (I don’t think “slumpy” is an actual word…but this is my blog and I do what I want) I know that is huge for me because the minute I start to think that I look frumpy, I feel frumpy…and when I feel frumpy I care less about what I eat…and then I care less about working out to keep my figure and then it all goes downhill from there. Try that sweater on first and make sure that it’s not too bulky, and make sure those leggings and skinny jeans don’t make your legs look like a can of crescent rolls waiting to be popped open against the edge of a kitchen counter.
• T&M man…T&M…let’s hashtag that sh*t… #TM…TRACK AND MEASURE!! During this time of year I make a lot of big pots of soups and dishes of casseroles. They are wonderful for providing multiple meals but it’s also extremely easy to over serve yourself. Take the time to measure out your portions. Invest some nice measure cups and spoons and even containers to store the extra servings in for future meals. And make sure to track it all! Even if you go 100Points over (and believe me…that has happened)…track it!! If you don’t follow WW you should still try to keep a log of what you eat. Invest in a new tracker/journal for the season.
• Stay FOCUSED!! Do not lose sight of your goals. Maybe come up with new mini goals just for Autumn/Winter. Like trying a new winter vegetable or participating in a winter sport.
There will be days where maybe you over enjoyed a bit…days where you forget to ask for the skim milk…days where you said “screw it” and just plopped that mac & cheese right on your plate…IT HAPPENS!! There’s nothing you can do about it but to accept it and move on!! You can still work towards and hit your goals around this time of the year. Enjoy the great offerings that this seasons brings…just be sure to stay mindful of them. Happy October!!