Strength Train The Day Before
Another tip to consider when trying to keep your weight in check over the holidays is to do an intense day of weight liftingbefore the actual meal. This is going to do a few things as well.
When you perform intense strength training activity, you will be depleting muscle glycogen levels, which is the storage form of carbohydrate in the body. This then means when you later consume carbohydrates during the meal, they’ll move right into the muscle tissues, rather than going to stored body fat.
If you go into thanksgiving slightly depleted in your muscle glycogen levels, it positions you for the lowest amount of potential fat gain.
Second, intense strength training is also going to spike your metabolic rate for up to 48 hours after the workout is over, so this too can help reduce your chances of gaining body fat.
When doing this session, you’ll want to focus on the most intense, compound exercises possible. Think squats, deadlifts, bench presses, rows, and shoulder presses. Doing a full body workout using a slightly higher rep range of 10-15 reps per set (which depletes more muscle glycogen) is your best bet.
Finally, about an hour before the dinner is set to take place, consider taking 10-20 minutes and doing a bit of meditation. This may seem like a strange idea to do before a meal, but it may just help give you a bit more self-control.
Studies show that meditation can help strengthen an area of the brain known as the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex, which is the area of the brain that is strongly associated with impulse control. The stronger it is, the better you’ll be able to say no to that second helping you may not need or the slice of cheesecake being passed around.
So keep these tips in mind as you move through this Thanksgiving season. If you plan ahead a bit and are mindful of how you go about the process, you can enjoy the meal without setting back your progress.