Tuesday, 11 December 2012

Christmas Party Diet – Stuff the turkey, not yourself! (Pt 1 - The Drinking Chapter...)

Okay, so I love Christmas. I love parties, I love family time, and I love the food. All of it – turkey and all the trimmings, Yule log, mince pies, cake, canapés, Baileys cocktails, tins of Quality Street, piles and piles of yummy deliciousness.

                                     (Pizza Express Snowball Doughballs...YUM). 

You know what I don’t love, though? Putting on 6 pounds and not being able to fit into my skinny black jeans and the beautiful fitted jumper I bought for Christmas day…(for my guide to Christmas jumpers, see here!)

A few years ago I had a bit of a nightmare over Christmas. It took me a new year’s resolution and a good few months of hard gym work to lose the extra tyre I’d gained over the festive season. Since then, I’ve worked out a way to manage my weight – so read on for Part One of my guide to staying skinny, or even losing a few pounds, in order to go out on NYE in your tightest black dress without scaring the locals. I’m not a doctor, and you should seek medical advice before you go on a diet, but these tips and hints helped me!

                                        (Two advent calendars? Oh go on then...)

Easy General Tips on Party Day!

1.     Don’t skip meals. I know this sounds like backwards logic, but if you start thinking ‘oh, I know I’m having a big meal out later/it’s the work Christmas dinner tonight/I want to eat a triple chocolate fudge sundae for lunch, so I’ll just skip breakfast,’ your metabolism will slow down, and when you do eat your naughty treats they’ll just stick to your hips because your body will think you’re starving. So EAT. If you know you’re going to eat a big meal at dinner, eat fruit or natural yoghurt for breakfast, and soup for lunch. Just keep your metabolism going.

2.     Don’t get hungry. I don’t mean eat till you feel sick. I mean eat your meals and don’t sit down at Christmas dinner ready to eat a horse, because you probably will. And if you go to your work do with an empty stomach then you’ll get drunk on two glasses of cheap white wine, tell your boss you hate him, snog the ugly guy from accounts and wake up wishing you’d listened to me...

Drinking tips…

  • Watch what you’re drinking. Alcohol is empty calories and some of them are also full of carbs, which bloat you and give you that unattractive spare tyre look (not fit). I try to stick to white wine and drink a whole glass before I refill so I know what I’m drinking. A SMALL glass – large glasses these days are 250ml, which is a third of a bottle. That is a LOT, girls. Think small glass = small ass.
  •   Drink water as well, especially while you’re eating – it’s easy to drink a bottle of wine with dinner before you even know what you’ve done! Don’t have a glass of diet coke, though, it doesn’t do the same thing – this can actually make you MORE drunk.
  •   If you don’t want or like wine, vodka and diet coke is the best low cal mixer. If you really, really want something high calorie like a Bailey’s cocktail then fine, but have it as your dessert – don’t have it WITH  the cake. Santa has sherry and mince pies and look at his stomach. You want that to be you? No. No you do not.

Hangover tips…

Try not to be hungover. It makes everyone want to eat carbs and curl up in bed like a hibernating animal. But hibernating animals have extra layers of fat. This is not what we want. Obviously, the best way to not be hungover is not to drink too much. Sometimes this is just unrealistic, so here are my best tips for avoidance and dealing.

1.      Eat before you go out. BEFORE you start drinking, not WHEN. I cannot stress this enough. ‘Drunkorexia’ doesn’t work and isn’t cool. You’ll just eat triple the calories tomorrow. Trust me. Eat a big plate of noodles or a huge salad or grab a sandwich on the go if you have to. Just eat.
2.      When you get in drink a huge pint of water. Two if you can manage it. Don’t make yourself sick, drink at a normal speed, it’s not a downing competition, you're not at the bar anymore so no need for strawpedos. Before you go out, put another glass of water and a packet of paracetamoyl by your bed.
3.     If you feel really awful in the morning, take the tablets. Either way, drink the water (or get up and get a fresh glass, if you feel OK). You need to eat to get your blood sugar back up. Porridge is good. Cereal is good. Fatty foods will make you feel even worse as they make your liver work even harder than it already is. Don’t.
4.     If you feel horrific keep drinking water. Pee it out, party girl. Have a Coke or a Red Bull if you really have to get up and go to work or something equally horrific. Otherwise just sleep as much as you can.
5.     Lunchtime – protein time. Hopefully you feel a bit unhealthy and you will WANT to be healthy. Chicken, salad, maybe some hummus. It’s low effort so just chuck it together. Have quite a lot of it. If you’re not full, have more. And more water. And more painkillers if you need them. Paracetamoyl needs to be taken at 4 hour intervals but you can take Ibuprofen too if you feel really bad. Don't be brave or a martyr to the cause. It's a hangover, no need to be all wounded soldier about it.
6.     Have a really long bath and put a face mask on. Keep drinking throughout the bath or you’ll get dehydrated (again). Slick on some eye cream and stick in some eye drops – drinking plays havoc with your skin.
7.     Dinner – something comforting. Get a ready meal, like a lasagne or a stir fry, stick it in the microwave, and enjoy. Take some vitamins if you’ve got any, in case you’ve got a bit run down. Vitamin C and zinc is good for your immune system, and a multi vitamin won’t hurt.

That's it! Now go to bed...or go out again, if you want, feeling and looking just as fabulous as you did last night!

(Don't eat the Christmas tree even if you are having fun...)

If you enjoyed my diet tips and would like to read Part 2, please follow my blog or just leave a comment below (or both!) and I'll post it soon!


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