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9 Secrets to Maintaining Your Waistline

    9 Secrets to Maintaining Your Waistline Over the Holidays - The Lemon Bowl

    There is nothing more frustrating that trying to lose those pesky last 10 pounds. Believe me, I know. This is my third ride around the weight loss merry-go-round and I can’t wait to get off.

    I reached my goal weight the first time, reached it once again after having my oldest son, and now here we are again after baby number two. Believe it or not, Jacob is officially a toddler now and just turned one last week!

    I’m not going to lie, it has been much harder losing the weight the third time around. Between hitting the gym five days a week and keeping our diet clean and colorful, I’ve very slowly lost close to 50 pounds over the last 12 months. Slowly being the operative word.

    With just 10 pounds left to goal, there is no way I’m going to let the endless temptations of the holidays stop me from reaching my happy weight. I’ve done it twice, I’ll do it a third time.


    Whether you’re looking to get a head start on New Year’s resolutions or simply want to have more energy and feel more comfortable in your own skin, here are 9 Secrets to Maintaining Your Waistline Over the Holidays:

    How do you to maintain your waistline over the holidays?

    Hit the Mall: Look, I love online shopping as much as the next gal. But if you must hit the shopping mall, take advantage of the opportunity to add a couple of thousand steps to your day. Even better? Park your car at the end of the lot for even more of a calorie burn.

    Pack Travel Snacks: Flying to visit the grandparents or have a long car ride to the in-laws? Plan ahead and pack a few healthy snacks for the journey. Homemade granola bars, mixed nuts, and fresh fruit are almost always in my diaper bag or purse when I hit the road.

    Fill Up on Protein: I’m not going to lie: I love carbs. Warm crusty bread and olive oil? Yes, please. But, the problem with carbs alone is that they don’t keep me full which is why I always try to fill my plate with protein. Sabra hummus is always in our fridge for an added protein boost – spread it on your sandwich instead of mayo or mix it with quinoa to make Hummus Quinoa Cakes, an easy weeknight dinner. Lucky for me, my toddler is a huge fan and has been known to eat a whole tub in one sitting…

    BYO Healthy Dishes to Share: Speaking of hummus, one of my best tips for surviving the hectic entertaining season is to bring your own healthy dish to share. Hummus and veggies, a hearty whole-grain salad or a side of roasted veggies are always welcome at holiday gatherings and provide a nice balance to the 1000th piece of fudge.

    Make Your Calories Count: When you find yourself standing in front of the buffet or at the dessert table, I encourage you to use the Two Bite Rule: take two bites and decide if it’s worth the calories. If it’s not, simply leave it on your plate. You don’t have to finish it just because you started it.

    Be Wary of Food Pushers: You know that friend or relative who pushes food and simply won’t be satisfied until you’re neck-deep in another piece of manicotti or a third slice of cake? Me too. Don’t be afraid to say “no thank you” and when in doubt, try moving to another room in the house or changing the subject. While Aunt Ingrid means well, she’s probably living in stretch pants.

    Don’t Drink Your Calories: We all probably know that peppermint mochas and eggnog lattes aren’t the best for our waistlines but it goes beyond that. When you drink your calories, your body doesn’t register them the same way it registers calories from food. As a result, you crave more and more because your body doesn’t feel full and you likely don’t get any long-lasting energy.

    Create Non-Food Traditions: Now that I have a family of my own, I’m looking forward to creating new traditions that don’t revolve around food. For example, every Thanksgiving we write letters to the troops overseas so that they receive cards in time for Christmas. It’s something fun that we can do as a family that doesn’t involve two sticks of butter.

    This Isn’t Your Last Cookie: Or a piece of cheese. Or a slice of Grandma’s pie. I promise. It’s ok to have just one or turn down the offer. You will have more opportunities to indulge sooner than you realize.

    Counting Hummus

    Funny Card - The Lemon Bowl

    What is YOUR best strategy for maintaining your waistline? Do you have any tips or advice? I’d love to hear all of it!

    No forks required.

    Disclosure: I am honored to be a Sabra Tastemaker. Thank you for supporting the brands that make The Lemon Bowl possible. As always, all thoughts are 100% my own. 


    Liz DellaCroce

    Liz Della Croce is the creator and author of The Lemon Bowl, a healthy food blog. Since 2010, Liz has been sharing delicious recipes that just so happen to be healthy. By using real ingredients with an emphasis on seasonality, Liz has built a growing audience of loyal readers who crave good food for their families. Click Here To Subscribe to my newsletter:


    1. I think the idea of “this is not gonna be your last latte” would relate to me the most. I actually work for Starbucks and we are right in the middle of our holiday promos. Therefore, I am constantly SURROUNDED by Sugar. I am an emotional Eater/drinker as well which makes it extra hard. I am only 22 and am still somewhat slim, but at the rate I’m going I’ll be the “fat lady” in no time. Would you have any further tips or motivational mantras to help me especially when I’m at work?

    2. LOVE LOVE LOVE this!! My maintenance plan involves eating crazy healthy in-between holidays so that on the day of, I don’t have to feel bad about indulging. In the end, one or two days won’t make or break you, but you really do have to keep it to one or two days instead of thinking of the holiday season as a blank check to eat whatever you want!

    3. Awwww, poor Aunt Edna and her stretch pants. But yes, we all have relatives like this. I can still remember my Grandpa’s voice, repeatedly asking “did you get enough to eat?” to all 50 relatives, even though we were all STUFFED after every holiday meal! There was no way NOT to get enough to eat!

      Such great tips for the holiday season, especially the two-bite rule. So true!

      1. hahahah It’s funny – if my MacBook didn’t keep crashing I would never hit the mall but I’ve had to kill a few hours there lately and I can’t believe how many steps i get in. But I’m with you. ;)

    4. I *love* packing my own meals for traveling, at least one way for long trips. Saves money and empty calories! And I too am often “that person” who brings the healthy(ish) food to potlucks :D

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