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Beat the holiday bulge and maintain your fitness with these tips.

Even those of us who manage to keep our waistlines in check and exercise regularly from January through November know that the real battle of the bulge begins in holiday season. Christmas parties pepper calendars and, come holiday time, piña coladas by the pool take precedence over lunchtime gym workouts. Needless to say, our fitness often suffers.

According to Nutrition Australia, Australians gain an average 0.8-1.5kg over Christmas. This may not sound like much, but researchers have found that weight gained over the festive season is rarely lost. Three-quarters of people polled in a 2011 survey by MSN admitted they over-indulged at Christmas, and took an average three months to shift the extra kilos.

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