How to Get Back on Track After Overeating?

It’s easy to get off track during the holidays if you’re dieting or trying to maintain your weight. Delicious dishes and sweets are beckoning from every direction. The temptations are so outrageous that you may need to know how to get back on track after overeating?

woman deciding how to get back on track after overeating

Keeping up the healthy eating habits and the daily exercise routine gets more and more difficult. Here’s the thing to remember: Most everyone falters at some time or the other, and some a lot more than others.

A “slip-up” probably shouldn’t be considered a relapse! A single day of overeating isn’t going to get you back on the obesity list. And if it makes you feel better, a couple of days won’t either. Not if you know how to get back on track after overeating, that is?

It’s the decisions you make over time that will keep your weight under control.

Experts suggest:

Before heading out to a holiday event is to think about what’s behind the reasons you tend to overeat at this time of year.

That’s sound advice! If you think about it, there’s probably a lot emotions, memories, and plain old habits that are at the heart of the urge to eat, eat, eat during the holidays.

This time of year may bring up many feelings— some good, some not so good.

By reflecting on what triggers you to overeat, you can take steps to keep indulging from over indulging.

Steps to Take Before You Head Out

1. Remind yourself why you’re trying to lose weight

Use flashcards or anything that works to show the reasons you want to eat healthy, lose weight. If you’re serious about your diet, you should have both written goals and a journal. Taking the time to go over them just before leaving could be a step in the right direction.

2. Eat something before you head out

This is something you should make a habit of doing before any party or get together. There’s two keys to make it work:

  • Eat something super healthy. If you eat something healthy that you really enjoy, you will be surprised at how it keeps you from craving everything you see later on. Do not eat anything with sugar, because this will have the opposite effect and turn on your cravings.
  • Eat immediately before heading for the get together. I find the best time to eat something like a baked potato, banana and peanut butter, bowl of yogurt, or a smoothie is right before leaving the house. This satisfies my need to eat and my cravings long enough to keep me from compulsively and impulsively eating when I get there.

3. Decide ahead of time what you will indulge in

This is a great step, simply because it can keep you focused on maintaining your hard won weight loss to avoid temptations. If you have an idea what who’s bringing, try thinking imagining yourself there, and picking and choosing just the indulgences you enjoy the most. That will help you have it settled before leaving just how far you intend to take your overeating.

4. Be flexible and reach for sensible

Be flexible in your eating plans for each holiday event… sometimes you can limit the number of deserts you’ll eat, another time you might have to limit things by courses.

5. Go easy on yourself

Give yourself permission to have three foods you truly love, and enjoy them, guilt free. One of the hardest things to get over when transforming your eating habits is feeling guilty when go backwards. Sometimes the secret is to enjoy all the small wins, and give yourself a break for the times you miss the boat.

6. Exercise just prior to going

If there’s anyway to work it in, try to get in an exercise session as close to leaving as possible. Exercise is one the great motivators for losing weight.

7. Be flexible and reach for sensible

Be flexible in your eating plans for each holiday event… sometimes you can limit the number of deserts you’ll eat, another time you might have to limit things by courses.

8. Go easy on yourself

Give yourself permission to have three foods you truly love, and enjoy them, guilt free.

9. Exercise just prior to going

If there’s anyway to work it in, try to get in an exercise session as close to leaving as possible. Exercise is one the great motivators for losing weight.

How to Avoid Overeating Once You’re There

— Be Mindful

Keep yourself in the moment, the here and now for mindful eating. Pay attention to what you’re holding, the sights and smells around you. When you eat, take time to focus on chewing, enjoy each and every bite.

The key to stay on track is to do your best to stay focused on the fact that you don’t want to overeat.

— Eat More Vegetables and Fiber

No doubt, you will want to try the desserts and sweets. But, if you have an option for veggies, try eating them first.

Eating the healthiest options first can help in several ways:

  • Eating healthy first can help you feel full, and curb cravings that get you to eating unconsciously.
  • Maintaining healthy eating habits for anyone prone to overweight issues is a real challenge. Eating the healthies options first is a good way to keep your brain and emotions focused on your goals to stop overeating.
  • Foods high in fiber and protein tend to naturally give a feeling of being full, helping you avoid eating too much.

— Watch Out for Food Pushers

They’re are surely well meaning family, friends or people at work who refuse to take “no” for an answer! They find it quite easy to push an offering of something fattening, and insist you take it. You may even think it’s an insult to refuse them?

The best bet, according to experts is to keep up the “no”, polite but firm, as eventually they will get the message.

What to Do the Day After Overeating

First of all, overeating isn’t the end of the world whether you’re at a special occasion or any other time.

It’s important for me to remember that my goals are just that! Goals. And goals are something to work toward accomplishing.

Weight loss goals are not something to create guilt, shame, and feelings of failure when there are set backs.

However, after going on a binge eating affair or just overeating at a get together, it’s vital that you get back to business as usual as soon as possible.

The longer you wait, the more difficult it is to get back to your more healthy eating habits.

You’ve got to get back on track right away, and these are three vital points to remember after overeating:

  • Don’t waste any time in guilt or shame. What’s done is done. Instead of trying not to think about it, try going back over the whole eating affair in your mind and taking full responsibility for your actions.
  • No skipping meals to “make up” for what you ate. The easiest thing for me to do is think, “ok, I ate all those calories yesterday, I will now make up for it by eating nothing today.” The better and most appropriate way to handle the day after overeating, is to simply get back to healthy eating, not “making up for it.”
  • Keeping up the good work. Don’t let yourself fall victim to the idea that one mistake means you must now blow off your long-term goal of healthy eating and losing weight. That’s the thinking that get’s you nowhere, except back to where you started.

Just remember that a day of falling off the wagon isn’t a total setback to anything. Instead, get back to focusing on your accomplishments and long term goals.

Here’s How to Get Back on Track After Overeating

1. Eat Breakfast

Even if you wake feeling full, make yourself start the next day off with a good, healthy breakfast. Not only will this reseat your metabolism, it will also help you get back into the eating healthy mindset.

2. Drink Lots of Water

Staying hydrated is important to good health and losing weight anytime. But drinking water will also help you feel full the day after a binge. When you’re staying hydrated after overeating you won’t be as tempted to keep on overeating the next day.

3. Stick to Your Scheduled Exercise Regime

Even if a light workout is all you can manage, it’s vital for getting back on track, and is certainly better than no exercise at all.

Getting up and moving will get you feeling much better, while reinforcing your mental and physical commitment to your weight management goals.

4. Eat a Salad for Lunch

In a typical salad the water content of the vegetables will go along way towards keeping you hydrated.

The low calorie lunch that’s high in water content will also help you over that groggy, sluggish, food hangover from eating too much.

Another plus of eating a salad for lunch is the mental and emotional reinforcement from making the decision to get back on track and eat healthy.

5. Have an Afternoon Snack

Eating healthy foods and snacks keeps your metabolism going, which you need to continue burning calories. But that’s not all an afternoon snack can do for you; it can keep your metabolism from crashing and actually triggering another overeating binge.

Try a handful of nuts and a piece of fresh fruit for something delicious and nutritious for your afternoon snack.

6. Avoid Eating Out Today

if you cook dinner at home you can control what you eat and how it’s prepared. Try for broiled fish with roasted veggies with a whole grain such as quinoa or barley. This gives you nutrients without all the processing and super large portion sizes that are part of eating out.

It’s a lot easier to eat healthy when you prepare the meal yourself, and a nutritious and healthy meal will definitely help both your mind and body get over a bout of overeating.


You can’t deny that the holiday season is a great time of the year. So, there’s no real point in denying yourself access to all the wonderful times with friends and family.

But, you can’t step over the fact that it’s a challenge to keep up with all the healthy changes and routines you’ve implemented.

Here’s a couple of interesting facts to remember about the holidays in the USA:

  • The average weight gain from Thanksgiving to New Years is from 7-10 pounds.
  • There’s a 15-20% decrease in people exercising during the same time frame.

So, it seems that the normal is forgetting, or just letting your healthy eating habits and lifestyle slide for awhile. But, the fact is, getting back to your goals can be difficult after overeating.

So, it could be important to know how to get back on track after overeating as quickly as possible with the information in this post.

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