Have a Plan & Lower Your Expectations
Saturday, November 14, 2015
According to statistics the average person will gain about 10 pounds during the next two months. With all of the food-centric activities those holiday pounds seem inevitable! But are they really? Do we use the holidays as an excuse to forgo all of the healthy habits we've been working on all year? For many of us we say, "Yes" with a guilty look on our faces. However, we don't need to be a statistic this year.
Food can be a loaded weapon during the holidays. It can be an overindulgence at a party because you are caught up in the frivolity (and the fruitcake!). It can be a coping mechanism because, once again, the holidays aren't turning out the way you hoped they would. It can be comforting because those cookies taste just like your grandmother's. Well, almost. Close enough!
Food is our friend, drug and/or therapist. The magic of the holidays conjures up so many emotions. Overindulging can be comforting, rebellious or numbing. But you are worth so much more than a few extra trips to the buffet.
As my Spark friends know I am a very slow looser. But I AM a looser! Even during the holidays. Here is my secret:
Have a plan and lower your expectations.
Your plan should rely on your strengths. For me that means creating a weekly menu and keeping a food journal. Those two things really keep me focused. I also create a calendar that schedules not only the important meetings, appointments, and holiday events but exercise too. My exercise appointment is scheduled in stone. It's me time!
My advice on lowering your expectations might be hard to follow. It takes practice. After all, we all want a perfect holiday, in a perfect home with perfect presents under a perfect tree. No matter how hard I tried I never achieved that perfection. Have you? I'm fairly certain that fairy tale Christmases don't really exist. So, I'm okay with an imperfect, quirky holiday. Be okay with good enough.
The biggest expectation I've lowered is the expectation of loosing weight during the holidays. So many people go into the holidays proclaiming that they are going to loose 25 pounds before New Years Eve. They are setting themselves up for failure. My goal for the next two months is to maintain my weight loss. That goal enables me to partake in a few indulgences, enjoying the holidays without obsessing over every little morsel and not going into a food frenzy. Another word for this would be moderation. Surely, we can handle moderation and still be in the holiday spirit?
So, what are your plans for the holidays? What are your expectations? Where do you want to be on December 31st? Where ever you are, you're in total control of how you get there. Take a map (your plan) and enjoy the ride (with reasonable expectations as your co-pilot)!