How to Burn Your Holiday Belly

It's no secret our holiday traditions cause weight gain. The American Heart Association reports most people gain five to 10 pounds between Thanksgiving and New Year. Overindulgence in alcohol, desserts and traditional holiday treats along with spending more time eating and less time exercising may leave you with a little extra bulge in your belly.

If you are guilty of overeating during the holidays, here are some tips to get you back on track and burn off your holiday belly.

1. Drink 80 oz. of water daily.

Drinking 80 oz. of water or more is one of the most important things you can do on a daily basis. It's as natural as you can get. There are no added calories, or cholesterol, and none of those unhealthy additives you find in other drinks.

Another benefit of drinking water is that it helps remove toxins from your body. It helps transport food from one part of your body's digestive track all the way to the very end. Furthermore, dehydration can affect your metabolism which can delay weight loss. Drink up.

2. Replace coffee with green tea.

Green tea can help boost your metabolism and burn fat more quickly. It also contains caffeine and antioxidants. Green tea helps regulate glucose, fight heart disease, prevent cancer, and reduce inflammation.

Another way green tea is good for burning belly fat is because it is a natural diuretic that helps reduce water weight from the body. This makes you look less bloated and helps clean out your system each time you drink.

3. Eat lots of fruits and veggies.

Fruits and vegetables are weight loss all-stars. Not only are they low in calories and high in fiber, they contains antioxidants that boost your health. It's important to eat a wide variety of colorful fruits and vegetables every day to reap optimum health benefits.

4. Choose better carbohydrates.

Get rid of white sugar and processed carbohydrates and choose instead to eat whole grains. Good sources include: steel oats, brown rice, whole grains, yams, sweet potatoes and legumes.

Eat carbohydrates after an intense workout when your body is most receptive and will convert them to energy. Also include protein and fats in your daily meals.

5. Stay active.

It can help you immediately feel better. Cardio exercise can include brisk walking, running, biking, dancing, or cross-country skiing. Doing cardio four to five times a week with combination of weight training two to three times a week is a great way to burn body fat.

If you are not seeing results, increase the intensity of your cardio exercise. But give yourself time to see results. The key is to stay active.

We all overindulge from time to time but getting back on track is one of the best ways to deal with the stress and anxiety that comes from overeating.

Start now. With each healthy choice you make, remember your commitment to stay healthy and fit year-round while quickly burning off your holiday belly.

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Jill Bruyere is an avid marathoner and endurance athlete living in Seattle Washington. She is the creator of two marathon training programs, www.breakyourpr.com and www.firstmarathonmadeeasy.com. Learn more about Jill and her running training tips at www.runwithjill.com.

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