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By Marco Borges, a world-renowned exercise physiologist, and author of ‘Power Moves: The Four Motions to Transform your Body for Life.’

During the holidays, it’s easy to overindulge in all the yummy, home-cooked treats. But before you bite into that extra slice of pie, celebrity trainer Marco Borges hopes you’ll take his healthy tips to heart.

1. Plan ahead! If you know you’re going to an event with lots of decadent food and drinks, don’t go on an empty tank — you’re more likely to make the wrong choices. Instead, snack on healthy protein and fats beforehand (like a handful of nuts), which promote production of hunger-suppressing hormone leptin in the stomach, making you feel full on much less food.

 2. Get your workout in early! Between shopping and holiday parties, everyone’s schedule fills up fast. If you get to the gym before the day has a chance to change your plans, you’ll not only ensure you don’t miss your workout, you’ll also start the day off right and perpetuate healthier behavior throughout the day.

 3. Don’t diet, live it! If you focus on dieting rather than healthy living, you feel deprived and more than likely, one of those holiday parties will have you calling it quits. Focusing on healthy living instead will give you the strength you need to see past the holidays and into the new year.

4. Know your number! The holidays are a time of year when the weight sneaks up on you and then you begin the year playing catch-up rather than living the life you want. Get in the habit of weighing yourself in the morning. If you find yourself a pound or two heavier, it’s easier to correct the behavior that caused it rather than waiting until the new year to realize you’ve gained 15lbs and not only have to deal with the added weight but also the mental feelings of defeat that hold you back.

 5. Get outside! Family gatherings are great, but they don’t all have to revolve around food! Get outside whenever possible for some fun, games and sweat! Whether it’s a walk after dinner or a game of extreme Frisbee, motivate your friends and loved loves to get active with you during the holiday season — they’ll thank you for it. And after all, what better gift can you give than the gift of health?


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