Friday, November 28, 2008

What now?

So you ate too much (maybe). You're back home (possibly) and have a ton of leftovers staring you in the face (unless you gave them to someone else!) Thanksgiving was lovely (I hope). It was for me. Although yes, I ate too much. I define "too much" by the PAIN radiating from my stomach area after dinner, to the point I needed to unbutton my pants and go lie down for a bit. Not pleasant. So, what are you doing today? That's the important question. Are you waiting for the days to pass in a blur, until Christmas is over (wait, make that New Years, after all, what's one more week?) Will you wake up on January first, the past 5 weeks a haze of overindulgence and lack of self discipline? Are you going to make it harder to reach your fitness goals? Are you already plotting your New Year's Resolution? If so, maybe it will be, "Lose the 10-15 pounds gained since Thanksgiving." Instead, how about heading it off and not gaining that weight in the first place?

Let me share a bit about my Thanksgiving. I made my lovely roasted turkey, with its delicious, healthy, low fat turkey breast. I also made fresh green bean casserole, homemade stuffing (in the bird), corn, rolls, and Snicker salad (recipes are in the sidebar). Company brought candied yams. My kids made fresh butter (shake heavy cream in a mason jar with a touch of salt and remove the soft lump of butter that forms... we do this every year). We had pumpkin pie, apple pie, and pumpkin gingerbread cake for dessert. And we drank sparkling cider with dinner. Pretty much the same line up we have every year.

The difference is that I absolutely COULD NOT FIT anywhere NEAR as much food into my stomach this year as I have in the past. Not even close. I had ONE plateful of food, not even a *heaping* plateful... just, like, 3 oz of turkey, a small spoonful of each side, and a large helping of green beans. I didn't even eat a roll!! (A Thanksgiving first, since I usually have 2-3 plates full of food AND 2-3 buttered rolls). Don't get me wrong. I wanted a buttered roll to dip in my (defatted) gravy. But after that one plate my stomach was *screaming* in pain and I just had to quit. I should have stopped way sooner. I remember the moment: I was not quite halfway through my plate when I got the stomach-brain signal: "I am full." I pay attention to that stuff now. Usually. But I had worked all day on this food, and I really wanted those green beans, so I kept right on eating. When I finished, I felt absolutely *ill*. I actually had ringing in my ears I was so full. Never again. I cannot believe I filled up so fast, and my body reacted that way. You gotta understand, with the volumes I used to eat, I NEVER felt sick or had any kind of pain. It's like I had a bottomless pit for a stomach before. So this was new to me. I didn't like it.

Anyway, after I laid down awhile, I came back out. The usual cue would be: dessert. But there was no way. No way my stomach wanted anything else in it for a couple of hours. So this time, I listened. Later in the evening, when things were quiet and calm and my food was digested, I made myself a cup of tea, had a teeny slice of pumpkin pie (about 1/3 of a small slice... and threw away the crust) and a slice of gingerbread to go with the tea. It was a perfect ending, and now I am READY to get back to the grind (and grind off the extra fat I may have generated on my body this week. I had a few, shall we say, indiscretions in my eating this week, which I shall write about at a future time. But nothing that cannot be undone.)

Do I have leftovers? Yes. Is my fridge stuffed with food? Oh yeah, you bet. I saved that turkey carcass to make some lovely turkey soup later. That will be a healthy and terrific meal. (By the way, that soup recipe link also has some great advice for getting back on track after a holiday). The pies? The kids can polish those off. If you have tempting, unhealthy leftovers: a) give them away... NOW. Take them to a neighbor, friend, coworker. Leave them at work or call someone and ask if they would like them. b) throw them out. Better than using your body like a garbage disposal. Which reminds me, what *really* tempts me are the leftovers from the rest of the day yesterday: the appetizers. Sausage balls (made from low fat sausage and low fat Bisquick, but who am I kidding? There is no way you can make a sausage ball "healthy"), cheeses and cheese spreads, summer sausage, crackers, and dips. Bad news. I used to live on that kind of stuff. Cheese is one of my biggest triggers. I used to eat 6 or 8 ounces at a sitting. So I am going to try and pawn it off on the family today, and if anything tempts me, into the trash it goes. Or the freezer... cheese actually freezes quite well and then I can use it in small amounts later.

I guess I am going to count calories today. When I opened Sparkpeople this morning, my brain said, "nooooooooooooooooo!!!!" But right now, that's what it takes to keep me from going nuts and eating too much. When I see the numbers on the page, it seems easier somehow to control myself. And I do get results. I need to bike today. My body really does not like it when I am not biking. So my goals for these last 3 days of November include:

1. Staying as close to 1200 healthy calories as possible... with lots of veggies
2. Biking at least 30 minutes per day
3. Being kind to myself but pushing myself out of my comfort zone, too, by moving more and fitting in lots of activity.

Today is the day to get back on track, eat healthy food, and get in some exercise, even if it is just a walk. Your body needs it. No more excuses. Do it now. You will be glad you did.


Hanlie said...

You must be so proud of yourself! Well done for keeping it under control and getting back to basics again today.

Krista said...

Crazy how much you can change in a year eh?

Awesome job on getting back to business :)

Paula said...

AMEN to all you said said...

That's one thing that surprised me, too -- how much less I could fit in my stomach! I had whatever I wanted, just less. Yum. Until next year :-)

TNelson said...

Hi - I just found your blog last night and I know I'm too late for the eight habit changing weeks but - I'd like to start them for myself now. Is there anywhere on your blog where you have them all posted together?

Love your blog btw -


Sharon said...

Great goals!

jae said...

I want to know more about how to make that fresh butter. That sounds so cool for my son! ~j

MizFit said...

glad you had a good thanksgiving. how was your yesterday? right back on track? I find it is HARD to get back to life with relatives still here (thru tuesday).

Lyn said...


the fresh butter is really that simple! Buy a pint of heavy whipping cream. Pour it into a mason jar... you can use pint or quart, just be sure there is a couple inches of room for shaking. Add a dash of salt. Put the lid on TIGHT, then tell the kid to shake it. They should shake up and down vigorously. After awhile a soft lump will form. Then you open it, drain out the liquid and pour the glob of butter into a bowl. Knead it a little and drain off the liquid. You can put it into a butter mold or just shape it in a bowl. Refrigerate.

The key is not to shake it for too long. If the kid shakes it hard after the lump forms, it will break into a million tiny butter lumps and look like a butter milkshake. You can't get the butter out then... unless you strain it or something. So watch for the lump!


jae said...

Cool! I will try it. Thanks! ~j