11/28/2012 10:39 am ET Updated Jan 28, 2013

Feel Like a Thanksgiving Turkey? Get Unstuffed From the Holiday Weekend

If you were like me this past Thanksgiving weekend, you might be feeling a little sluggish, a couple of pounds heavier and a bit anxious about the next month of holiday splurging. The best thing you can do is to hit the "reset" button now, so you don't run the risk of a snowball effect that leaves you feeling completely defeated come January 1.

The holidays are meant to be enjoyed, and so you may have had a couple of extra servings of your favorite dishes, a few extra glasses of wine and little to no time to get to the gym. No need to beat up on yourself, for that is what the holidays are all about! Now that the weekend is over, however, here's your strategy to get back on track (at least until the next holiday rolls around!).


  • This week, get back to your fitness plan and add in an extra day or two of exercise (If you normally exercise three days a week, try to get in five days).
  • On those days you choose to do aerobic exercise, increase your duration for an extra 10 minutes to help burn off some of those extra calories.
  • Boost your intensity during exercise so you burn more calories per hour (e.g., lift heavier weights, run a little faster, kick a little higher).


  • With the added salt intake this past weekend, you are likely carrying some extra weight in fluids. Drink extra water (10-12 glasses a day). This will help flush the toxins out of your system, making your system more efficient and promoting regularity.
  • Do a mini-detox by focusing on whole foods. Eliminate sugars, fried foods and overly-processed breads and other packaged products. Eat lots of vegetables, fruit, whole grains and lean proteins.
  • There's a good chance your stomach expanded a little over this past Thanksgiving weekend, potentially making it think it needs more food to feel satisfied. Try to eat five or six smaller meals throughout the day, keeping you satiated, but helping your stomach adjust back to its normal size.


  • Get the house back in order by prioritizing the "must-dos," such as laundry, food-shopping, and cleaning.
  • Take a night or two this week to get back to decompress and enjoy alone time.
  • One night this week, take a relaxing bath and get to bed early. Whether due to the stress of cooking, driving, shopping or family, a bath will help alleviate the tension of the holiday weekend, and a good night's sleep will help you feel energized and refreshed.

Bonus: Avoid extra holiday weight gain with these tips.

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