It's hard to believe this is my fifth Thanksgiving since starting along this road. I started with a 5K at the stroke of midnight and I'll do another late afternoon in between dinners. Yes, dinners. I'm traveling to Stillwater with my daughters for a mid-day dinner with mom and family, then back to Ponca City for an evening version with my daughters at their mom's house. There will be food. Plenty of food.
How does this food addict make it through Thanksgiving without spiraling into a months long bender?
Knowing my limits is key. In weight loss mode or maintenance mode, I must have a limit. I'll allow 2500 calories, if needed. I say " if needed" because I remember a few years ago getting late in the evening and eating more simply for the sake of hitting 2500. That's silly. I'm in weight loss mode and much less likely to be silly this year.
I'll still avoid certain high-calorie, high-fat and super sweet things, like pecan pie and, uh...pecan pie. In all fairness to pecan pie, it is delicious indeed. The first four Thanksgivings along this road, I thought I was avoiding pecan pie based on caloric value alone. I now understand there's more to it than that. I'm avoiding it this year for the calorie value reason, plus--with its super rich sugar content, I'm confident it's one of my trigger foods.
I'll eat reasonably and my plate(s) will be an example of what doesn't trigger my urge to binge. I'll have some turkey breast, a normal size portion of mashed potatoes, a small portion of dressing, some vegetables and even a slice of pumpkin pie. Maybe a roll, maybe not. I've never been a big bread person.
We're all different. What doesn't trigger me may send you reeling. Noticing, being aware and honestly assessing our individual limits is paramount to our success.
The conditioning that Thanksgiving must be a holiday where everyone gets stuffed beyond reason is ridiculous to me now. It is traditionally centered around food, but that doesn't mean I have to conform to tradition. I will keep my focus on the best parts of Thanksgiving--the family, the love and the many blessings in my life. The food will take a back seat, a minor role. The food will be good, no doubt, but I will not make it a day all about food. I will make it a day all about living.
If you're celebrating Thanksgiving today, make it one to remember for all the best reasons. I'll do the same!
Thank you for reading, Happy Thanksgiving and...
This picture is from last holiday season. I had been at goal for just over a year. I look at this picture and realize getting back there isn't really that far down the road physically. It is worlds away mentally when compared to the struggles of the last six months. I'm so thankful today for the hands extended me while reaching out recently. With strength from above and amazing support from so many, I'm choosing change. And I'm doing it with new information about my strengths and weaknesses. A life forever free from the chains of obesity was once just a dream. I'm wide awake now and learning what it takes for the forever part.