The holidays are a doubled-edged sword for folks on a diet. As much as you love getting together with family and friends and celebrating the season with parties and dinners, the temptation to eat some fattening foods – and lots of them – is too great for your ability to say no. This is especially true if you plan to spend the holidays in Myrtle Beach, where there is a wide selection of great restaurants serving Christmas and New Year's feasts and hosting lavish holiday parties.
At Compass Cove Resort, we feel your predicament. With so many great things to see, do and eat in Myrtle Beach, it is easy to forget the diet and enjoy all the food, drinks and dessert until the New Year. But for those who don't want to pack on any extra pounds that they will have to work off in 2016, here are six tips for surviving the holidays on a diet:
Avoid buffets: Myrtle Beach is famous for its all-you-can-eat seafood restaurants, and lots of restaurants offer buffets for the holidays so they can put out a spread of seasonal dishes for the masses. But don't bite on the bottomless bonanzas if you want to avoid the temptation to eat all you can eat. Instead, choose restaurants that offer healthy alternatives where you can order soup and salad instead of turkey, stuffing and all the trimmings. Actually, traditional turkey dinners are fine if you stick to the turkey; it's often the side items that are your demise. Mashed potatoes with gravy, stuffing and other starchy classics should be cut out or limited if you don't want to carry the extra weight home with you.
Late-night snacks: Sometimes it's not what you eat so much as when you eat it. Studies have shown that those small snacks at bed time can be more harmful than bigger meals during the day. It's a simple matter of metabolism: You resting rate allows food to be stored instead of burned, and the next morning your pajamas may fit a bit more snuggly. Timing is critical to a successful diet, so try not to eat anything a few hours before you call it a night, especially something sweet or high in calories. Stay on a fairly strict breakfast-lunch-dinner rotation. Also, drink water before and during your meal instead of drinking the empty calories of sweet tea, soft drinks and alcoholic beverages.
Portion discipline: If you were one of those kids who were raised to clean your plate, maybe the plate is your problem. Don't pile it high and wide in an effort to fit as much on your plate as possible. Instead, try using a smaller plate and placing a modest amount of food on top. Choose wisely when doling out your precious plate real estate by placing only a spoonful of heavier dishes, or cutting out the bad stuff all together. Don't gobble it down and head back to the serving station. Instead, wait a few minutes for your food to digest and you may discover that you are already full.
Sweet stuff: The biggest risks to your holiday diet are all those sweet treats that seem to appear out of nowhere. A platter of cookies from the neighbors, a pan of brownies from kinfolk, and those pies and cakes that show up out of thin air can conspire against your diet plans. This may be the hardest part for holiday revelers to resist. It's so easy to pick up a handful of cookies and make them disappear before you realize it. Instead, reward yourself by being good with one sweet treat and savor it.
Walk it off: The best way to avoid the additional pounds of the holidays is to stay active. You may not want to interrupt your holiday plans for a full workout, but staying at the Compass Cove in Myrtle Beach can make it fun and easy to get physical. Take a long stroll down the beach and enjoy the scenery while working off some weight, or visit the on-site fitness center for a quick workout. Guests can even go for a swim in the indoor pool and lazy river if that's what floats your boat. It's better than couch surfing with a plate of leftovers.
Best of luck sticking to your holiday diet during your holiday getaway. Even if you can’t eat and drink yourself silly while you are in Myrtle Beach, you are guaranteed to have a great time at Compass Cove.