Thanksgiving is just a few days away. The season of all the eating and drinking opportunities is just about here.
This is a good thing. Really! I want you to celebrate. But I also hear from many of you that you want to prevent yourself from feeling overstuffed and back tracking on progress that you’ve already made.
My tips today are just a small part of my upcoming holiday program. You’ll be getting targeted nutrition and training to tell you exactly what you need to do to begin sculpting your body immediately. But in a way that isn’t miserable, too time consuming, or bans the fun foods.
What I know is that when January 1st arrives, you can look back, have some happy memories of a fun holiday season, yet fit into your pants. Or maybe even need some smaller ones! It’s 100% possible.
Look for that later this week. And for Thanksgiving and any other big holiday, I want you to chill out a little.
You chill? I hope so. Now you’re going to make a plan. And then make a plan. My clients feel a lot more at ease when they head into an event with a plan of action. And I think you will too. There’s no one right way to make one. But you’ll have a happy and healthy holiday season if you realize you’re in control.
What kind of day is it?
You can categorize your meals: an everyday “punching the clock” meal. A moderately indulgent meal. A truly special, super indulgent meal. Or even a “yolo eat everything in sight meal”.
To be honest, if 97% of the time you’re eating to meet your goals, a yolo meal wouldn’t do anything to derail you. The real problem with choosing to eat all the things is that you often end up feeling a loss of control. And that can spiral into more days of losing your groove.
Instead, let’s talk about how to indulge a bit more without feeling that way.
Eat lighter in the hours before your event. But don’t starve yourself.
If you go into Thanksgiving dinner with your stomach screaming, you’re going to overeat. And eat things you might not have otherwise chosen. Instead, stock up on some non-starchy veggies and lean protein to take the edge off during the day. On days like these, you can eliminate or minimize snacking and just get a healthy breakfast and lunch.
Size up the meal ahead of time.
You get to the event. Most likely you have some time before you sit down to dinner. Check out that glorious spread. But then ask yourself: what are the things that are actually special? That will taste amazing to you and that you don’t get to have all the time?
For me, mashed potatoes are ho hum, everyday kind of fare. But sweet potatoes with marshmallows on top make me feel like a kid again. Make room for the great stuff. Skip the ordinary. And take advantage of the fact that the centerpiece of the meal is often healthy, lean meat. Eat some turkey and let that help you get fuller with less food.
Be a taster.
Often we just want to experience flavors. You may be satisfied by two bites of a casserole instead of taking a cup sized portion.
Or it may be the opposite. There will never be a slice of pecan pie big enough for me to say “that’s enough.” I could probably eat a whole pie until I got sick. I love it that much. So what goes on my plate is a small sliver. I get to taste it, and then be done with it.
Make it fit on one plate.
Just one plate. You can do it! This is where the tasting portions of your foods come into play.
Choose your drinking ahead of time.
Most of the time when my clients have post-holiday regret, it involves alcohol. Not just because booze has empty calories. But more often because it loosens you up to the point where three slices of pie seems like a completely awesome idea. Decide what your limits are before you arrive.
Catch up with the people beside you as you eat. Tune out your blowhard racist uncle. Take in the meal, your company, and linger with your food a bit. This gives your brain and stomach time to have a chat and let you know that you’re no longer hungry.
It’s just one day.
It’s just one day. If you eat more than you thought you would, it’s not a big deal. Seriously. People gain weight during the holidays not because of Thanksgiving dinner. But because one heavy dinner turns into days and weeks of saying “oh well. I’ll start later.”
Why start later? There is no wagon to fall from if you see that days like Thanksgiving are part of the big picture. Just get back to your regularly scheduled program and you’ll be fine.
The biggest question you need to ask yourself is what kind of pie. I told you I’m saving room for a little pecan pie. How about you? What is your favorite part of your family holiday meals?
Check out Amy’s website.