Keeping off the Holiday Pounds GWA Style


Here we go again, another holiday season. If you are anything like me your social calendar is really starting to fill up. With dinners every other night, parties, lunch events, all involving food and all typically involving alcohol, how can anyone possibly avoid gaining weight over the holidays? Well that’s where I’d like to help. Keep reading for some good information and informative tips on how to keep off the extra holiday pounds.

First let’s take a look at how many calories are in some of our favorite holiday items:



Calories in a typical serving

Egg Nog

1 fl oz = 43

1 cup = 343

Milk 2%

1 fl oz = 15

1 cup = 122


1 fl oz = 24

4 oz glass = 92


1 fl oz = 13

1 can (12 oz) = 153


1 fl oz = 56

56 + whatever you mix it with

Tall Starbucks non fat latte


Tall Starbucks whole milk latte


Starbucks shortbread cookie(1)


Can of Coke


Chocolate chip cookie (1)


Butter Tart (1)


Now let’s compare some common ways to burn those calories:

GWA 60 minute spin class: if you weigh 130 lbs = 750 calories; if you weigh 200 lbs = 1200 calories

GWA group class: very similar to spin, but can vary a bit depending on how hard you work that day

Running for 60 minutes at 8mph if you weigh 170 lbs = 955 calories

Running for 60 minutes at 6mph if you weigh 130 lbs = 607 calories

Walking for 60 minutes at 2mph (very slow) 130 lbs = 118 calories; 200 lbs = 186 calories

Walking for 60 minutes at 4mph (brisk) 130 lbs = 300 calories; 200 lbs = 745 calories

First of all I would like to start by saying this, “Do not attempt to lose weight during December,” why bother frustrating yourself? Instead make it your goal to maintain your current weight.

Tip #1


Train hard the day before a party or event. If you plan on drinking wine doing a GWA spin class beforehand would allow someone like me (170 lbs) to have approximately 5 smaller glasses of wine and 2 half cup 1 oz rum and egg nogs. If I wanted to eat deserts and other treats that I normally don’t eat it would be smart to cut back on some of the drinks (I would rather cut the snacks and keep the wine however).

Tip #2

Snack before going to an event. This will make it less likely that you will be starving when you get there and absolutely gorge on all the wrong things. A few treats are fine, but some control is smart.

Tip #3

Substitute your calories. Try drinking only black coffee in December freeing up valuable caloric space for other holiday treats. If you have one or two lattes everyday (150-300 calories) you could substitute those and consume those ‘banked’ calories as chocolate or shortbread instead. Try mixing your egg nog with milk to bring the calorie count down a little.

Tip #4

Don’t be afraid of protein and rich foods. These foods actually fill you up and stay with you a lot longer than foods equally high in calories containing too much sugar. Fat is not a bad thing.

Tip #5

Sleep. Lack of proper sleep has been shown to contribute to weight gain and added stress.

Tip #6

Relax. Stress is a major contributor to weight gain. Take some time to stretch, do yoga, exercise, and go for walks – anything that will help you relax.

Tip #7

If you end up gaining weight over the holidays, don’t panic. Just come down to GWA first thing in the New Year and we will set the ship right for you.