Hey guys, with Turkey Day tomorrow I got to thinking, soooo when did Thanksgiving day turn into an all you can eat buffet? While good food should be enjoyed, the turkey or pumpkin pie does not deserve center stage! To me we should put more emphasis on enjoying each other’s company vs falling into food coma. After all, it’s about giving thanks and cherishing family, friendships, and life.
FYI– the hubby decided to take over the blog today, just be fair warned.
The idea that the cultural norm is to stuff yourself like a turkey, and fall asleep after a big ‘ole feast, has never sat well with me. This isn’t the last time that you’ll get turkey, and dressing, and cheesecake! It truly is okay to give yourself permission to eat until your satisfied and leave the rest for later. I know, weird concept right?
While you enjoy good time with the ones you love, here are some tips to help you survive the excessive holiday feasts so you can kiss the New Year’s resolutions goodbye.
- Drink water so you don’t confuse hunger for thirst.
- Carry a big water bottle around if you need to!
- Load ½ your plate with vegetables at the meal (like the green ones without all the extra butter and toppings).
- If you don’t think these types of veggies will be in the spread, bring your own! I’m doing a roasted veggie & cauliflower and this Apple & Kale Salad.
- Eat often!
- AKA- don’t skip meals in hopes to “save up” for the big feast this doesn’t work and will backfire by putting your body into fat storage mode when you finally do eat that big Turkey feast.
- Have a balanced breakfast and eat every 3-4 hours or so to prevent swings in energy.
- Pace yourself—slowly sip 2 big glasses of water in between every alcoholic drink.
- Keep in mind the guidelines for men is no more than 2 drinks per day and women 1 per day (and nope—saving these up doesn’t count either—that would be called binge drinking and only leads to beer belly).
- Be active
- Take advantage of the company of friends and family and get them moving with you! Instead of crashing on the couch, go for a hike with the fam post-turkey. I have the best memories of us doing this last year in Alabama.
- Start a family soccer or flag football game to get everybody involved.
- Schedule a turkey trot in the morning or a fun festive workout that will keep you accountable. Eric and I will be doing the Track Shack Turkey Trot at Lake Eola. It’s my “official” first turkey trot and I’m so pumped.
Now for Eric’s Thanksgiving tips straight from the fingertips of Eric LaRue aka the hubs.
Ok, so let me spit the truth to you folks who have been suckered into this “health” blog. YOLO. Eat as much as you can on Thanksgiving Day. You never know, tomorrow a giant asteroid could hit earth and guess what, that means no Thanksgiving next year. (Have you ever seen the movie Armageddon?)
So, after your main course, have that second piece of pumpkin pie and the spiked apple cider…and the celebratory cigar, and then after the cigar go back for some pecan pie and maybe even the turkey and cranberry sandwich before you hit the sack for the night. If you truly want to enjoy your Thanksgiving the way our forefathers envisioned, follow these battle tested tips and you’ll leave T-Day a champion:
1. Save Up. And I’m not talking money. I’m talking stomach space. Think of Thanksgiving Day as your stomach’s Super Bowl. NFL players don’t go into the Super Bowl lazy, untrained and out of shape and neither should your stomach. This means that you should forgo at least one and preferablly two meals before Thanksgiving lunch/dinner. This technique is guaranteed to have your stomach ready for the 4th quarter when it feels like giving up.
2. Mandatory Naps. Your goal should be at least two uninterrupted naps during the day after a large consumption of tryptophan. Don’t buy into the myth that exercise on Thanksgiving Day will make you “feel better.” What does that even mean anyways? Besides, we’ll all have plenty of time to exercise and “feel better” on January 1. Since we’re on the topic, probably the best way to get into better shape is to wait until the New Year and join a gym. It’s fool proof and guaranteed to work.
3. The third tip is there is no third tip. Thanksgiving feasting is all about following your impulse and emotions. If your taste buds are telling you that you need that piece of pecan pie, you probably do need it, it’s probably just preparing you for when the asteroid hits tomorrow. Kind of like a bear going into hibernation. Amazing creatures. The human body is highly complex and it probably knows better than us what it needs, so listen to it and get busy feasting! You don’t need a list or a “how to guide” to live it up on Turkey Day. Just wing it. (see what I did there?)
QUESTION: Who’s doing a Turkey Trot with me?
Hi I’m Kristina LaRue, registered dietitian and millennial mom of two active and hungry boys. Here on Love & Zest, you’ll find (mostly) healthy recipes to fuel the whole family and real life stories of modern motherhood. I’m all about veggie-filled breakfast meal prep recipes, healthier sweets, and easy weeknight dinners made in the Instant Pot or sheet pan.
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