I’d rather watch The Today Show

…than go to spin this morning.

My legs are reminding me that I maybe should have rested yesterday, but my afternoon run felt so good that I’m not hating on it!

I knew going to bed last night that I might wake up feeling…unmotivated…to go to the gym first thing today, so I’m just going with it!

I had breakfast, a take on the Pumpkin Bowl Creation recipe I did up for RunnersFeed.

one of those ones I swear tastes better than it looks!

I painted my finger/toenails.

FESTIVE!

And I’m watching The Today Show. And am shocked at the number of segments I’ve seen on TV in general lately about keeping weight off over the holidays. Ditto goes for the healthy living newsletters I get in my inbox and the websites I like to read. Magazines too. What is it about the holidays that makes people fear they’re out of control and are going to come out fat? The treats? The stress? The combination? What happened to looking FORWARD to the treats. Or to the holidays in general and all the fun stuff they bring?!

Yesterday, Carrots n Cake posted “Treat Treats Like Treats” and ended her post with “Here’s to treating treats like treats and getting it together.”  One of the goals Tina wrote about on Best Body Fitness in “Finding Balance During the Holidays” was to “limit indulgences to special treats…not every day treats.”

Contrast this with a more critical approach to all the tips about keeping holiday weight off like Michelle May, MD does in her last newsletter (“Rewriting Those Ridiculous Holiday Eating Tips”). I especially like her part with common tips and her responses, including: “Eat before you go to a party so you won’t be tempted by all the goodies. (Really??? Do you also recommend maxing out your credit cards before you go Christmas shopping?)” Funny.

I think it’s up to us to figure out what’s going to work. It’s common sense that eating cookies all day will make you feel like crap, but maybe it’s not common sense that not letting yourself have your favourites will also land you there. The big realization I’ve been having in the last little while are that my overdoing it is still using my disordered approach as an excuse, just letting Ed get at me from a different way. The only way to change it is to try, so I’m setting myself a few goals to stay HAPPY over the holidays, which I know will translate into staying HEALTHY:

  1. Get plenty of sleep. I know I make healthier choices, am in a better mood, and look/feel more energized when I’ve gotten 7 or 8 hours of sleep! Without exams or classes to worry about, what better time to catch up on my rest?
  2. Do yoga. I am so looking forward to time in Sarnia because I’d like to try out Agoya and do some of Tory’s classes. I am sure it will be a butt-kicking at first but finding my zen is always easiest in an amazing instructor’s class and oh golly do I miss her!
  3. Fill my spare time with friends and fun. Sounds cheesy, but it’s true. If everyone’s around for the holidays, I’m going to see them. In the past when I feel “heavy” or stressed or whatever, I use it as an excuse to stay home. I think getting out of the house/apartment every day is going to make me saner and happier and my goal will be to do something fun every single day!
  4. Treat treats as treats. Yes I stole the phrase from Tina (confusing, because there’s two Tinas in my blogging world), but it’s catchy. And I think it will help me remember that birthday cake, a festive drink, hot chocolate while I walk through the Christmas lights, and Christmas cookies/special dinners ARE treats.  Eating candy before bed, bingeing, etc. are something else and I don’t need them.
  5. Go to the gym…less. I don’t want to make the gym a daily thing. I can walk, I can run, I can go to the gym, I can do yoga. I can take a rest day. Just because I feel like I’ve “let myself go” doesn’t mean it’s true and what I do know is that I want to get to a healthy place that doesn’t force me to “get it done” at the gym. I think I’m doing well with saving exercise as a stress relief, focusing on doing things besides endless cardio, and seeing it as something to make me healthier.
  6. Focus on getting as much nutrition as possible. Why not take the time off school to try out new foods I’ve been meaning to — quinoa? kale? — and to try to balance my eating as much as possible when I’m not enjoying those treats. I’m sure I will notice that I feel better if I focus on fruits and vegetables, whole grains, healthy protein, etc. and I’m going to use the next few weeks to test out the whole eating as healthy as I can when I can and letting myself off the hook when it comes to treats or to unexpected situations (i.e. a shopping trip where I ate all my snacks and had to order a fast food sandwich? not going to ruin me).
Safe to say I think sorting all this out is going to make me healthier and happier than if I’d forced my tired legs through a spin class this morning!

On the agenda: send a few Christmas cards, go the bank, submit my application to Columbia (NBD!), and maybe hit up the gym for a weights workout later if I’m feeling a burst of energy!  I LOVE Christmas, so I’m going to try to enjoy it despite my last exam.

These guys love Christmas too!

What are your healthy living principles?  Goals for the holidays?
Do you go home for the holidays for an extended period of time?
What’s your favourite Christmas food? Tradition that doesn’t involve food?

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9 responses to “I’d rather watch The Today Show

  1. Go to the gym…less: Today I’ll be using the gym for its lockers… and walking across the hall to the ice rink for public skating hour. (This, after walking a half hour to campus. It’s about active living, right?)

  2. so true, even the international triathlon union/ITU (the sport’s governing organization) website has an article on ‘working off holiday festivities’. it’s EVERYWHERE. personally, I’d like to add in some skating at vic park over the holidays – cross training!

  3. I think that’s a big one. Focus on getting in nutrition…not the amount of calories. Thinking of it in nutrition terms puts it all in better perspective.

    And I never really get the eating before a party thing either. It won’t make me eat any less…so in the end, I eat more by eating before going. I just make sure I only choose what is really worth it to me and pay attention to not OVER eating. If I want treats, I’m going to have them, but at least I will have them within reason and hopefully balanced out with some lighter options available at the party.

    • Thanks for the comment…Your post was a little bit of an inspiration that sparked mine! 🙂 I really appreciate that you’re honest and said the temptation to fall back into old habits is still there cuz I SO relate. It’s really good to hear that you can ignore them, thanks for giving me hope!

      I feel worse if I eat before a party. I know I’m going to end up eating anyways, and I REALLY don’t know how to stop if I’m not even hungry when I start.

  4. Just started reading your blog! Took me a moment to figure out who Ed was.. Clever!

    I have been wanting to try & make kale chips.. I am not much of a baker so I keep putting it off. Maybe next week?

  5. Thanks for sharing this post with me, Cheryl! “but maybe it’s not common sense that not letting yourself have your favourites will also land you there.” I totally agree with you! You have to do what’s right for your body. And if having cookies when you want them, and taking rest days when your body needs it, you’ve mastered healthful balance!!

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