You must think I’m a hater…
Oh, please. If you only knew how much sugar I’ve dumped into my body over the last 40+ years, you’d be amazed. I know there are some strange humans out there that “just don’t like sweets” but not this girl. I was born with a candy cigarette in one hand and a pixie stick in the other. As a youngster, my father fostered the idea that hard work, good grades, and a family member’s birthday= a treat. A sweet treat. Not like the low carb sugar alcohol goodies, I create for the fam and pass it off as our new normal.
“When you have your own house and pay for your health insurance, you can eat sugar to your heart’s content. Today, however, I’m responsible for making sure you step into your adult role with some modicum of sugar restraint.”
Actually, I yell, “No! Stop eating all that crap!” But you can appreciate my intention, right?
The eve of falling off the wagon…
It never fails. October 31st marks the starting line on the adult path to holiday debauchery. It’s the figurative demarkation of our annual free-for-all. Sister, brother, the stranger whom I’ve never met, it’s time to rewrite my story. I am stronger than that Reese’s cup. A Butterfinger has no supernatural power over me. Pumpkin pie, pecan pie, and sweet potato casserole- get behind me Satan!
All year I focus on honoring my temple with quality food and healthy habits. I exercise self-care to lessen my stress, and I encourage others to set boundaries between work and personal life. Why then, do I take my place in the candy aisle two days before Halloween and wait for the starting line gun to go off?
The Fall of My Fall
As a color expert, I understand the crafty uses of red, orange, yellow, and hot pink packaging to lure me into a feel-good happy state. Am I destined to loop my decades-long tradition of The Fall of My Fall every season? Not if I become proactive on a plan. That’s the key, Friend. Unless I have a plan to maintain my health during the holidays, it becomes the beginning of my end. At least my December 31st end when I’m so fed up with feeling miserable and the eight pounds that took a year to come off have somehow reappeared in 60 days. Ugh.
So why do I do it? Why do I put my health on hold for the celebration of the holiday season? Is it worth all the detoxing and retraining my tastebuds, and nursing my way back from the post-holiday flu? My brain shouts, “No, you idiot!”, But my heart says, “It’s what you’re supposed to do silly. What good are the holidays if you can’t enjoy a little treat?”
It’s time to retrain my brain
More importantly, my mindset. That is what this struggle with holiday = fun, versus total deprivation all boils down to. Being human, I live in a world where the release of Pumpkin Spice Lattes and Christmas decorations in September signal the season of harvest. It’s time to reap the rewards of putting in a long, productive year! What better way to honor my dedication to success than over-processed, sugar-laden food? Really? Of all the numerous ways I can congratulate my achievements I choose cheap food?
Though it is an honest struggle for me, I am shifting my holiday mindset from “free-for-all” to “food for thought.” What event or activity can you involve yourself in that doesn’t require food? Sometimes my husband and I will go to a party and not eat. If it indeed is the people for the reason of my social calendar, then why do I make it all about the food? Just some food for thought!
- Keep your triggers out of your pantry AND your fridge. If you don’t have it, you won’t eat it. Thanks, Captain Obvious!
- If you bake a dessert for a function, do not bring home the leftovers.
- Don’t treat every day as an opportunity to treat yourself. Look at your calendar and know the events that are coming up. Select one party or happy hour for the week that you will be loose in your eating. Going on a multi-day run of parties wrecks havoc on your insulin production. The more meals you slam into your system with a high sugar and carb content, the more addicted you will become. Sugar is as addictive as cocaine. It takes 3-4 days to burn all the glucose out of your blood, and the Standard American Diet (SAD) heaps meals upon meals into an already burdened system. (Schedule a free consultation to discuss this point. It’s too much to cover in this blog)
- Have a backup plan for food. If you are staying focused on a particular lifestyle with eating, take a monster salad or side dish that you can eat (and share). Coordinate with a friend to bring your safe foods.
What is your focus during the holidays?
This question is the crux of the matter. What is your intention for this holiday season? To gain ten pounds or reconnect with friends and family? I’m not trying to be harsh, but that is the real question I want you to ponder. Set your intention today, friend. Today. Not Wednesday night at 11:59 after you’ve downed ten fun-size candy bars. Find your purpose for the season and create a food plan within reason.
Don’t dull your SHINE with unhealthy food,