Stay fit during the fat season

I bet you’re still full from feasting on last week’s Thanksgiving dinner. You’re probably still nibbling away at carb packed turkey sandwiches topped with canned cranberry sauce and delectable hunks of pumpkin pie.

If you are already regretting holiday binge eating, you are in luck. It is possible to prevent weight gain during the holidays, and you won’t have to go on a diet. You will, however, need to maintain a diet.

Portland State University’s physical education instructor Greg Lekas believes that diet does not have to be difficult.

“People make a big deal about dieting but it is really quite simple,” Lekas said.

According to Lekas, the key to maintaining a healthy diet during the holidays is eating in moderation and portions.

“Carbohydrates are not bad for you, they are good for you,” said Lekas. “However, portions are what people need to remember. A plate of spaghetti is not one serving of carbohydrates. It actually adds up to about eight. People need to do everything in moderation.”

Many college students believe that going all morning with nothing more for breakfast than a cup of coffee will help them lose weight. On the contrary, waiting until midday to have a decent meal is actually depriving your body of the energy it needs to keep up a fast paced metabolism. In other words, settling for morning hunger pains may actually be rendering your body unable to burn calories.

“You need to start your body off with a protein source,” says Lekas. “If you eat two eggs first thing in the morning and then take in your carbs, you will kick start your metabolism and get your furnace going. You will start burning calories.”

Diet may be one part of staying healthy during the winter months, but it is also essential to keep your muscles fit. It is common for college students to become so wrapped up in school and friends that they forget the importance of exercise. With the Portland weather being rainy and cold there is a tendency for PSU students to stay inside, taking up hobbies that don’t allow them to move and work their muscles.

Mr. Lekas says, “If you have to be inside, you have got to make a point to move. At least three times a week you have got to move your body and get it warmed up. For at least thirty minutes three times a week you have got to keep your body in motion.”

The key things to remember about health and fitness as you trudge into the holiday season are: moderation, proportion, and movement. If you remember to think about each of those three things, you will be able to come back from your holidays with your body in the same shape as it is today.