Test Drive your Diet Plan Over the Holidays

By: Debbie Fontana

You wouldn't buy a new car without taking it for a test drive. Then why commit to a diet plan without testing it first?

Think about it.

You test-drive a car to make sure you'll enjoy a smooth, comfortable ride. And most importantly, you want to know the car will take you to your destination.

If it doesn't, you won't buy that car. Or if you've been duped and got stuck with a "lemon," you'll trade the car for one that works.

Then why don't we hold our diet plans to the same standards?

We've been so conditioned to suffer when we lose weight that we've come to expect - and accept - a bumpy ride in the form of hunger, deprivation and unappetizing food.

And how many times has your diet plan or weight loss program failed to get you to your destination, otherwise known as your target weight?

You deserve to know if your weight loss program will work in any situation at any time of the year.

So take your diet plan for a test drive. And if it doesn't work, don't make excuses for it... don't beat yourself up like it's your fault... just dump it.

The hardest tests for any diet plan happen during the holidays because they're a source of endless temptation.

Many of these holiday tests occur in social situations. Which makes sense because other people often put intense pressure on us to cheat on our diets.

So unless you intend to become a hermit or a martyr, make sure your diet plan gives you a smooth, comfortable ride past these 7 holiday tests:

1. Holiday Dinners.

The biggest one in the U.S. is Thanksgiving. But each holiday presents its own eating challenges.

Are you going to miss all the pleasures of holiday dinners - including the social aspects of sharing traditional foods - just because you need to lose weight?

There will always be special occasions like holiday dinners, birthdays and weddings that won't fit into a stringent diet.

So choose a weight loss program that can handle these special occasions realistically and let you enjoy life.

2. The Big Game.

In the U.S., it's the Super Bowl.

But there are many sporting events throughout the year where food plays a big role. Are you really going to nibble celery and carrot sticks when everyone else is enjoying pizza and beer?

Or will you simply skip any event that threatens your weight loss success?

That's no way to live.

You don't have to eat everything in sight. But you should find a diet plan that will let you socialize at sporting events without feeling like an outcast.

3. Holiday Parties.

One of the biggest social tests for any diet plan is a holiday party. But parties can occur throughout the year.

Whether it's with a group of friends or professional colleagues, there's a lot of pressure to join in the fun - and that includes eating and drinking.

Make sure your diet plan provides effective strategies for dealing with drinks and party snacks.

4. Restaurants and Dining Out.

This test can happen throughout the year, but never more intensely than during the holiday season.

Can your weight loss program handle it or will it be a diet killer?

5. The Office.

Your office can cause any number of diet disasters.

Candy jars, morning doughnut surprises, birthday parties, retirement parties, client lunches, client dinners, and of course, holiday office parties.

With candy jars, you can graciously decline to snack. It's just a matter of willpower.

But with client dinners and holiday office parties, you'd better show up or it could cost you your job. So if you want to lose weight, you have to be able to work these situations into your diet plan.

More eating temptations occur at the office during the holidays than at any other time. So if your diet plan works then, you should be safe throughout the year.

6. Holiday Desserts.

Sweet temptations abound over the holidays - whether you're at social gatherings or home alone trying to resist leftover desserts. Can you work these sweets into your diet from time to time?

If you can, you should be able to successfully handle any cravings for sweets during the rest of the year.

7. No Time To Exercise.

Even though exercise is good for your health, exercise programs often become the first casualty of the busy holiday season.

But problems with exercise can occur at any time during the year. Suppose you're injured in an accident. Or work or family problems take up so much time, you can't exercise.

It's best to choose a diet plan that will work with or without regular exercise. The weight loss benefits of exercise should be a bonus, not a necessity.


These are the 7 hardest holiday tests. But there's another reason to make sure your diet plan will survive the holidays: they come around every year.

You don't want to reach your target weight during the off-season only to regain your extra pounds over the holidays.

So test-drive your diet plan this holiday season.

If you can enjoy a smooth, comfortable ride and reach your destination (or at least come closer to it), then you can be reasonably confident that your weight loss program will work throughout the year.

Important Disclaimer: This information is presented for educational purposes only. This isn't medical advice and it's not a substitute for any advice or treatment from your physician. You should always see your doctor before starting any new diet.

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