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Avoid unwanted pounds

woman exercising at home If the cold winter weather keeps you inside, you may find yourself dreading the unwanted weight gain that often comes with inactivity and eating more high-calorie foods. Don’t get discouraged—instead use these strategies to keep off those extra pounds.

  • Enjoy more fruits and vegetables. Filling half your plate with fruits and veggies helps you feel full while eating fewer calories so you won’t be as tempted by high-fat, sugar-laden options.
  • Watch your portions. Eating smaller portions lets you enjoy those holiday favorites without feeling deprived.
  • Learn something new. Enrolling in a class to learn a new skill or hobby keeps you busy and active. This can boost your mood and help you avoid boredom and mindless snacking in front of the TV.
  • Drink more water. Increasing your intake of H2O hydrates your body and is a healthier alternative to sugar-laden drinks that are high in calories.
  • Get active indoors. When it’s too dark or too cold for outdoor activities, bring your exercise indoors. Try mall walking or a dance or Zumba DVD. If you have access to a fitness facility, sign up for a class or try swimming, playing tennis or joining a basketball league.
  • Build muscle. Try crunches, pushups, resistance bands or lifting hand weights at home.

If you join a fitness center, schedule time with a trainer to learn how to work exercise equipment or the proper technique for lifting free weights. Remember to speak to your provider before starting any new diet or exercise program.