Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Not Just Surviving Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving is a great holiday. We get to spend time with family members and think about all the things we're thankful for. And of course, there's all the delicious food! So many people on the weight loss blogs and forums are steeling themselves to "survive" this holiday, but they're going about it all wrong. I've been thinking about some of the mistakes we sometimes make around this time of year, and I thought I'd share.

1-All or Nothing Mentality:  "I won't eat any pie or potatoes, and I'm going to avoid all of the snack foods on the table. If I give in, I'm a failure." SERIOUSLY? That's how we end up eating a whole pie, you know, since we already "failed" when we took the first bite.

2-Taking a "Break": "Well, it's just one meal. . .I can eat as much as I want. I'll fix it tomorrow."  Except tomorrow there will be leftovers in the fridge. And pretty soon the Christmas Parties will start, and then you'll get a stocking stuffed full of Chocolate Bars. Oh, and don't forget New Year's. . .

3- Not Planning Ahead: This is when you don't make a choice ahead of time on what/how you will eat. This ALWAYS leads to giving in.

So how do we solve all these problems?  Easy.

1-It's okay if you like pie. In fact, most people do. Go ahead and have a slice, and don't feel guilty. The trick is to actually enjoy it though. Eat it slowly. Pay attention to how it tastes. I think part of the reason we eat too many desserts is that we shove them down without letting ourselves taste them. Then we just want more. If you're worried about the calories, scrape off the whipped cream or don't eat the crust. Or just try to leave at least one bite on the plate.

2-This is what made me gain 50+ pounds in the first place. Don't let anything be an excuse for you to have a free-for-all with the food. That doesn't mean you can't enjoy yourself, though. There are a lot of foods associated with this time of year that we don't get to eat the other 10 months. I say it's okay to eat them; just watch the portions.

3- I've actually already had one Thanksgiving Dinner this week (last night, with my parents). My husband and I are going to spend Thanksgiving Day at my in-laws. Yesterday morning I was already thinking about pie. I used to try every kind of pie that was offered, but I didn't want to do that this year, so I planned ahead. While I was getting ready for work, I thought, "Let's see. . .I don't really like Pumpkin Pie that much, so I won't eat that one of they have it. I'll eat either chocolate cream pie or pecan pie. Unless they have both. Then I'll have a tiny sliver of each."  You know what?  It worked! They served Banana and Chocolate Cream pies, and when they asked if we wanted one or both, I already knew what my answer would be. Then I ate my slice very slowly and enjoyed every bite. I left the whipped cream and most of the crust on my plate. . .and it still tasted delicious!

I just want to challenge all of us (myself included--I still have another Thanksgiving meal this week) to not just survive Thanksgiving Dinner. Enjoy it!!!


  1. Good advice. Have a Happy Thanksgiving.

  2. Thanks. :) Happy Thanksgiving to you too.