It's the most wonderful time of the year! For everything except our waistline, that is...

Thanksgiving is over which means we're now free to daydream about the fuzzy feelings that accompany the time leading up to the December holidays. It's a time of giving, shopping, and, most unfortunately, cooking and eating.

We all know the holidays mean food, food, and more food. Obviously, it's not the healthiest of menus, either. There are ways, however, to prevent packing on those unwanted holiday pounds this year.

Have you though about calling in the professionals? Programs like VirtuaFit may be your best option. Sometimes, doing it alone just isn't the best route to take when it comes to health and fitness. Having a team of professionals behind you will not only keep you focused on your fitness goals, but will also assure you maintain responsibility for your diet and exercise choices.

If you think you've got it under control, here are some great tips to keep you and your waistline hotter than the sales on Amazon this Christmas season!

  • 1

    Don't Skip the Gym

    Since swimsuit season is long gone, some of us don't feel as guilty if we don't go to yoga, body boot camp, or even hit the treadmill as hard as we were a few months ago.

    If you're trying to thwart your usual seasonal size increase, stay on track with your exercise routine. It's so easy to fall off the wagon right now, but if you maintain your workout regiment, even if you do eat one too many slices of pumpkin pie, the scale shouldn't really reflect it.

    Also, more specific to the day of the feast, make sure you hit the gym early. Don't not go. That's the worst for you on the actual holidays themselves.

  • 2

    Keep an Active Lifestyle

    Now, you might think this is redundant considering we already said to make sure you're keeping up with your daily exercise, but it has nothing to do with working out.

    This time of year is usually when we all start to slowly become couch potatoes. Now, it usually doesn't truly hit us until after the new year, but for some of us, it's already too cold to be engaging in the activities we enjoy. Good news is, though, usually most people are still on the go this time of year. Chances are, you'll already be super active anyway since the holidays are a crazy time for everyone.

  • 3

    Eat Well and Frequently

    Make sure you're keeping your metabolism in tip-top shape by eating enough during the day. However, make sure you're choosing healthy options and not binging on junk food.

    The faster your metabolism, the better it'll digest the Thanksgiving feast.

  • 4

    Stay Hydrated

    Getting enough fluids is not only important for your overall health and well-being, but it's necessary for your metabolism to perform at its highest capacity.

  • 5

    Weigh Yourself Every Day

    To some, this sounds counterproductive. Studies have actually demonstrated that there are in fact those who monitor their weight daily are more likely to sustain weight loss.

    This isn't for everybody, but for people approaching it with the right mindset, it can help tremendously in learning the way your body digests and processes food throughout the day. It keeps you accountable. Also, it can allow you to learn what time of day you're at your lightest and your heaviest (which, obviously, will come in handy at both the Thanksgiving and Christmas dinners).

    Source: MyFitnessPal.com