Check out these 5 simple tips you can practice on Thanksgiving to help keep you on track with your fitness and fat loss goals.

Eat More Turkey: Turkey is made up of mostly protein. Protein is the sole macronutrient responsible for building and repairing your body’s tissue stores (fat and carbs simply provide energy). More specifically, regular protein intake is vital in accelerating the repair of muscle damage from high-intensity activities like strength training and cardio interval training. In addition, adequate protein intake every two to four hours is essential in maintaining your current levels of lean muscle mass. This is important because the more muscle you have the larger your metabolic engine, thus the more calories (and fat) you burn on a daily basis since muscle tissue requires a lot of energy to sustain itself. Protein is also the least likely macronutrient to be stored as body fat and the mere act of digesting protein requires more than double the energy to digest than carbohydrate and dietary fat.

Pass on the Casseroles: Casseroles can derail any fit persons nutrition strategy. Casseroles get their rich flavors from fat laden creams and butters which contain large amounts of calories from fats. Some casseroles will contain healthy vegetables but the amount of fat per serving usually out “weighs” the benefits. Reach for healthy high fiber foods like sweet potatoes and/or a spinach salad.

Limit Your Desserts: Desserts are a tradition in most households on Thanksgiving but if you want to keep the figure you have worked so hard for the past few months you will want to skip the high sugar and potentially high fat savory desserts. If you can skip one type of dessert, skip desserts with crust. Crusts add fat and sometimes trans fats to an already sugar laden treat. Plus, portion control is difficult with desserts. Try a large glass of tea with stevia sweetener.

Consume Less Spirits: Alcoholic beverages can negatively impact anyone’s goals to a lean trim body. Alcohol adds empty calories to your nutrition. Empty calories won’t make you full like food can but they are calories non-the-less. If you are going to drink try clearer options like Vodka.

Create a Metabolic Disturbance: Get an intense metabolic workout before your Thanksgiving meal. Try either a strength workout using body weight exercises or resistance equipment with limited rest between sets. If you prefer cardio, try a cardio interval workout where you work for a period of time and rest for a period of time. For instance, sprint for 30 seconds on a treadmill and recover for 60 seconds or longer to get your heart rate back down. Both workouts will help deplete muscle glycogen stored in muscle tissue so your body will use Thanksgiving dinner as fuel instead of storing it as fat.

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