Sunday, October 10, 2010

Weekly Meeting Topic : Thanksgiving

If you're one of my neighbours to the South, you're probably thinking isn't it a little early to start talking about Thanksgiving?  For us Canadians, its not.  Thanksgiving is here!  Due to our cooler climates, harvest time is much sooner for us and its time to give thanks for a good growing season, the crops being in, and our family and friends.  Each year as the big "eating holidays" roll around handling them becomes the topic at our weekly Weight Watchers meetings.

My friend Bonnie was here visiting until this morning, and she was great coming to my Saturday morning meeting with me.  She didn't have to, she could of stayed at the house relaxing and stitching.  Thanks for coming along Bonnie!

Thanksgiving in both Canada and the U.S is the start of the feeding frenzy!  Once this holiday passes we start rolling right onto the next eating holiday, Christmas.  Which really isn't a day of eating but easily turns into a week of eating.  These lessons for this holiday can very easily be applied to any of our eating holidays (Christmas, New Year's, and Easter to name a few).

At this time of year you need to focus on your plan of attack.  My regular meeting leader (Tuesday) always tells us at this time of year that we have three choices:
  1. You can loose weight.
  2. You can maintain.
  3. You can gain weight.
So to put any of these into action you have to have a plan of attack!  Once you've decided what you want to do over the holiday season you have to plan how you're going to deal with it and focus on that goal.

To be able to loose weight or maintain, take a moment and think about your old habits PWW (Pre Weight Watchers).  How did you feel after eating that meal on Thanksgiving?
  • Stuffed?
  • Bloated?
  • Guilty for all you ate?
  • Getting stuck it the guilt cycle and just keep eating?
Hold onto that feeling and try your best not to get to that point!  My leader at this point shared a great quote with us:
Those who don't remember the past are condemned to repeat it.
Remember that YOU are in control, no one is force feeding you... no one is making you have that heaping helping of stuffing or that huge wedge of pie!
  • Know what foods help you and what foods don't (what food starts you eating uncontrollably?)
  • Focus on what stuffed feels like and use it to imagine your success at not feeling that way when you're done eating
  • Focus on the day and its meaning, not the food
  • What are you thankful for?  Your body is thankful for you being healthy!
What are some strategies we can use to maintain our weight or maybe even loose a little at this time of year?
  • My personal strategy is to divide your plate into 1/4's.  Have 1/4 protein, 1/4 carb (rice/roll/potato and I rarely have 2 carbs at one meal), 1/2 plate veggies, veggies, veggies!
  • Vegetables are filling foods, pile these high on your plate and eat them first then there won't be as much room (hopefully) for those higher point foods.  Feel free to have 2nds of those veggies
  • Small portions, my leader actually had a great suggestion, don't let the food touch, make sure you are able to see some of your plate between the different foods you've put on your plate.  This is a form of portion control!
  • Before the meal have a big glass of water, sometimes I also make sure I've had a small salad or some veggies before heading out to that big meal.  You're only setting yourself up for overeating if you go to that meal STARVING!
  • The previous point also leads to the idea of skipping meals on the big day... don't skip a meal!  Yes, be vigilant I often try to eat low point foods the day of so I have more wiggle room with dinner but I never skip a meal!
  • Exercise... earn those activity points!
  • If you're the cook, learn how to lighten up your favourite holiday recipes
  • Think of mindful eating not middles eating! 
  • Focus on the people not the food.  Its hard to eat when you're talking!
  • Don't forget you have your weekly points, be angelic through the week and save them for that meal!
  • NO ELASTIC WAISTBANDS, no yoga or sweat pants!  Try to wear fitted clothes, these clothes won't expand with your belly and if you start to overeat you will feel it!
Finally, Thanksgiving is a HOLIDAY not a HOLIWEEK!

I've had friends over visiting until this am and yesterday was such a gorgeous day that I encouraged Bonnie to come out with me for a walk.  Not only did we go for a walk, we brought our cameras with us to take some pictures.  Sometimes its nicer to go out with a purpose not just to "get some exercise".  Here are some shots from our 45 minute walk.

The bikers were out enjoying the great riding day.

Last of the sunflowers

Milkweed seed pods are opening up

Cattle corn, waiting to be harvested

First Jack-O-Lantern!


Kimberly said...

Happy Thanksgiving, Dani!

...and congrats again on your loss... what a great boost for you!

Ellen said...

What beautiful pictures. Sounds like a beautiful weekend, too. I needed a crash-course like the one you provided today; a little jog to the memory doesn't hurt - especially when it's easy to forget what may have happened last year.....OK, what DID happen last year! LOL
Here in the US, between Halloween, Thanksgiving and Christmas, everyone seems to do nothing but bake for 3 months. It's hard to pass up on some of those goodies but using strategies like the ones you described will certainly help.