So the nights are drawing in, Strictly Come Dancing is back on a Saturday night and the supermarkets are full of Christmas produce. The sight of all those mince pies, tins of quality street or my personal favourites, Merryteasers (a giant malteser shaped like a Christmas tree) make it extremely tempting to defer your weight loss goals to the New Year. But wait…

It’s not too late to get in shape for Christmas!

There’s actually still a full 9 weeks until Christmas. That’s 9 weeks for you to get control of those pesky hormones, change your body shape and shed some of those unwanted inches. How can you do that:

Planning & Preparation

Be sure to have healthy snacks like nuts or a couple of chunks of quality dark chocolate to hand to stop you binging on sugary foods. Schedule a couple of hours each week to batch cook and freeze healthy meals. If you’re prepared and you plan ahead the next time you’re running late or having a super busy day you’ll have tasty, nourishing foods to choose from rather than opting for a quick fix or a take away.

Relaxation & Sleep

Stress and fatigue are your enemies in the fight to lose fat. When you’re stressed your cortisol levels increase and that leads to weight gain around your middle. And don’t forget your body reads stress in many forms including low fat diets and even some types of exercise. Not getting enough sleep leads to hormone balance and particularly effects the balance of your hunger hormones ghrelin and leptin.

Mindset

Your mindset is just as important as what you eat and how you exercise. Sticking to a healthy weight loss plan isn’t about willpower, it’s about the power of your subconscious mind. First of all try to get any self sabotaging negative thoughts and feelings out of your head and onto paper. One way to do that is by writing down responses to the following statements:

I can’t lose weight because….

Try to list about 20 responses to the above statement. Once you know what can potentially stop you from succeeding you’ll be better equipped to deal with it.

Next write down about 20 responses to this statement:

How can I most easily lose weight…

Don’t underestimate the power of your mind and how it can either sabotage or support your weight loss efforts.