So the Thanksgiving feasts are all done and you just spent the last four days spending precious time with family and friends and consuming your weight in food. You enjoyed every food delicacy that this holiday has to offer and maybe even went back for seconds. Some of you had multiple families to go see in one day and may have had two or three Thanksgiving meals within a 4-hour time frame. Oh how wonderful this holiday is isn’t it? You get to load up on love from families while loading up your plates and filling up your bellies (until you need to put your stretchy pants on so that you can consume more). All the while, not feeling guilty at all. Right? Well part of this is right I would say. It’s true that everyone gets his or her fill of good food and good family time but I don’t know about not feeling guilty about it.
The one thing I hear from people after Thanksgiving is about how guilty they feel after eating all that yummy food and that they need to get in the gym ASAP to burn it all off (I don’t know if it is because I am a dietitian and they think I will judge them for all the food they ate but I can tell you right now that is far from the truth because I am right there with you eating my weight in all the calorically dense goodies). I’ll start Monday, right? There is only one thing wrong with this statement though and that is the fact that you feel guilty. I spent so many years feeling guilty after every time I ate and Thanksgiving was no different. In fact, Thanksgiving was the hardest for me because I wanted to eat every bit of my favorites but then I sat around thinking about how many calories I just consumed and wondering how I was going to burn it all off instead of truly enjoying my family time.
Guilt is that evil monster that lurks in the corner waiting for you to eat something filled with sugar, flour, and all that yummy fat. He gets us at our weakness and tears us down to where all we have left to do is wallow in all the guilty feelings he has to offer. Guilty eating is like carrying around a bag of bricks. It weighs us down and makes enjoying the family time impossible (which is the best part of the holidays). It is time to lay this bag of bricks down and free ourselves from this horrible monster called guilt. (BYE FELICIA….can I get an Amen?)
Repeat after me…I WILL NOT FEEL GUILTY FOR EATING MY THANKSGIVING MEAL!!!!!! I WILL NOT FEEL GUILTY FOR EATING MY THANKSGIVING MEAL!!!
So what if you consumed 5,000 calories in one day. I mean your stomach may be a little fuller and your GI system may be a little unhappy for the next couple of days but did you enjoy yourself? Did you have lovely conversations with your closest people while eating your 600 calories of cherry pie? I know I did and I loved every minute of it. So I am going to say a big NOPE to that guilt monster. I WILL NOT FEEL GUILTY FOR EATING MY THANKSGIVING MEAL!!!
Here is a little fun fact: 3500 calories is equal to 1 pound of weight. Therefore, you would have to eat 3500 calories more than you normally would on a daily basis to actually gain 1 pound of body weight. I highly doubt you ate 3500 calories in excess for four days in a row. Most of us are going to get back to our normal routine (maybe even have leftovers) and I can assure you, you will probably not be eating as much as you did that one day out of the year when the Turkey went gobble, gobble. So stop talking about how you probably gained 10 pounds over this past weekend because YOU DIDN’T! (I would also highly recommend not getting on the scale right after Thanksgiving because most likely the increased number is from all the sodium and fluid you consumed that is still leaving you a little rounder than before).
Let’s not even give that guilt monster a chance. Whatever happened at your Thanksgiving meals this past weekend, leave it at the table. Don’t carry around all the guilt all week, because that bag will sure get heavy. Let’s all lighten our load this holiday and free ourselves from all those guilty feelings. Let’s go to the gym not because we want to burn off all the calories, but because we want to get our emotions in balance and our muscles a little stronger. Let’s not starve ourselves this week because we feel like we have to compensate for all the calories consumed (because that sounds miserable and also pointless). Let’s just get back to doing what we do best, having all things in moderation. Sorry guilt monster, you aren’t winning this year!
THIS YEAR I PLEAD NOT GUILTY. Who is with me???