Avoiding Weight Gain During the Holidays


Staying on track and avoiding weight gain during the holidays is hard for everyone. Even seasoned athletes and IFBB pros can have a hard time since overall motivation just seems lower around the holidays.


Maybe it’s all the time spent with family, sitting around talking and eating a lot more food than usual, but even though it’s completely normal, it makes it harder to stick to a set diet or exercise plan. I’ve decided to describe how I managed avoiding weight gain during the holidays by working around the Thanksgiving holiday without feeling deprived and how you can, too.


Stick to Your Cardio and Basic Meal Schedule


Morning cardio is a must to get your metabolism going and to get your body moving early in the day. For me, Thanksgiving Day started with a scoop of BCAA Boosted (formulated for fasted cardio) and an incline walk on the treadmill for 40 minutes.


I made sure to eat my normal meals after cardio, but I kept them light. I drank one serving of Milk Chocolate Titanium Isolate Supreme and then had a serving of the Vanilla Sundae flavor three hours later. Titanium Isolate Supreme is a fast digesting, premium whey protein with zero fats, so it’s perfect for managing my daily meals and keeping calories and macros low before big feasts like the Thanksgiving meal with my family. It makes avoiding weight gain during the holidays much easier.


Use the Calorie Bank


Some people consider this a method of counting macronutrients, but I just consider it living life. Treat your eating like a bank; you can build up your calorie bank account during the holidays by saving calories for the meals around the day of a holiday event with family and friends.


This isn’t just for holidays, either. Let’s say you have a big event at your job, a birthday party, or something where you know you may want to enjoy foods you normally wouldn’t eat. You can use this method to “bank” your calories for the inevitable events that are part of life without feeling left out, anti-social, or deprived.


Maintain Balance


When you’re not too hard on yourself, it’s much easier to stay clear-headed and keep on track for attacking your goals and avoiding weight gain during the holidays. Once you go back to your normal life and eating on your everyday healthy plan, your body will bounce back, and you won’t compromise your metabolism.


You might even have a little extra time and motivation the day after a holiday or at some point in the following week for a session or two of fasted cardio, or maybe you’ll be driven to push yourself to lift a bit heavier in the gym.


Of course, if you’re very close to competing in any sort of physique contest, it’s best to completely avoid anything off your plan. Otherwise, I truly believe your body and mind are connected, and it’s a part of a healthy life to be able to engage in social events and spend time with family, even when it means a few extra calories and treats once in a while.
Ariel Khadr
IFBB Fitness Champion