I said this last year and I’ll say it again: Don’t worry about weight gain this holiday season.
I’m working on some updates to this blog, but while those are rolling out, I couldn’t not chime in to whatever audience may stumble upon this.
The holidays are for family and friends and joy and good food, not for agonizing over how many calories are in your foods or beating yourself up for what was on your plate at dinner.
Last summer, when I’d stopped counting calories and was trying to learn to eat intuitively, my therapist told me something I’ve never forgotten: Just eat whatever makes sense in the moment and focus on the fact that you’re there spending time with friends, instead of focusing on the food.
I couldn’t fathom just showing up to dinner with family, or to a restaurant with friends and just eating, without having weighed out all the food and tracked the calories beforehand, without having run 6 or 7 or 8+ miles earlier to “earn it”, without the anxiety of how I was going to work off the calories once it was all said and done, and without the stress of wondering how much weight I’d gain from one measly meal.
The holidays are supposed to be joyous, and while a lot of things this year may be less than pleasant (politics at the table, anyone?) your relationship with food doesn’t have to be one of them.
Mindful eating is important and intentional eating is important, but don’t over do it. Food is secondary to what’s really at the core of the holiday season. Time to spend with the people we value most.
Even if you’re an insane introvert like me, it’s still nice to see your mom an extra day out of the week, or to watch your niece run around, or to see family from out of town.
That’s what this time of year is for. Not for being preoccupied with food and weight. So live long and prosper, friends. And eat whatever your heart desires.
(Oh, and if you want these cookie recipes, I gotchu: Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Shortbread Cookies and Nutella-Stuffed Brown Butter Sea Salt Chocolate Chip Cookies)