Any of you that are older than 25 surely played Pitfall on the Atari! To help jog your memory here is a photograph:
The game concept was simple. You had to accurately swing on a grapevine and/or hop across the alligators heads (when their mouths were closed) to get across the pit! It also had a subterranean passage with ladders to navigate from screen to screen but even there dangers lurked in the form of scorpions.
Well you may wonder WHY I'm bringing up this piece of video game history now. We are about to play a REAL LIVE GAME of Pitfall. It's called "the holidays". Some of you have already gotten a head start at Thanksgiving and may have fallen into the pit and are starting the game anew. Others may have successfully navigated that pit but look ahead there are many more to come!
So what's in the pit? Weight gain, poor eating, slacking fitness minutes, scrimping on sleep, etc. A study done by Tufts University in Boston found that among overweight and obese individuals the holiday weight gain was significantly more than the general population. In other words, if we are already overweight we tend to overindulge MORE during the holidays. This study found the average to be 5 pounds other studies report as much as 10 pounds and I can speak from experience LAST year that mine was 9 pounds.
So how do we swing/jump across this pit?
1) TRACK every bite. EVEN the days you overindulge. It's important to keeping those excesses to a minimum and for motivating us to do better the next day.
2) PLAN your events. I've said this before - circle the parties on the calendar and be sure on those days you get cardio before AND after, push water, and try to eat light the other meals.
3) EXERCISE - KEEP MOVING. This means get that heart rate up. You need cardio for effective weight loss. If you are walking, pick up your pace. You shouldn't be able to SING if you are moving fast enough for it to be cardio.
4) BE ACCOUNTABLE to someone. Join a team on Sparkpeople, get a friend, family member or coworker to buddy up.
5) IF you fall into the pit get back out IMMEDIATELY!
Now grab that rope and JUMP!