How do I approach Thanksgiving??
Moderation, stick with my rhythm, or it’s a Holiday so free-for-all?
Well, as a Nutrition Coach, I’ll give you my take.
It’s fine to have days that aren't perfect. For most people, eating ‘pretty well’ about 80% of the time will get you to goals. 90% gets you there too. 99-100% is unrealistic, especially if you’re not paid for it.
So, what about the other 20%? Is it a whole day? A meal? A meal that lasts all day??
It could be any of those things. The most important thing I urge my clients to examine is mindset around it.
In a holistic approach to nutrition and health, nothing is off limits. We do not have Good vs Bad. We have lives, and we are multidimensional people. ‘Good’ and ‘Bad’ is a little too Willy Wonka ‘Eggdicator’? We will not send you down the same chute as Veruca Salt, because you ate a bad egg. Enjoy your chosen days, in moderation.
“I’ve been good all week!!”
“I deserve this reward”
“I ate something bad”
These statements are all-or-nothing thinking. They subconsciously set you up for the *other* extreme. I can't tell you how many times I've seen this in a Friday food journal "But I've been good all week!!". The issue wasn't the food choice, but the mindset around it.
Thinking on a spectrum can help to set you up for success long term.
EX/ My choices fell here
Eat Less of This ____________x________ Eat More of This
How you think affects future actions. In everything. That's a separate topic, but just accept it.
I urge caution in connecting food to all-or-nothing thinking, reward or association.
If ‘Every Thanksgiving I have pie AND cake’, that is an association.
Similar to ‘Every time I race I get a donut after’. That is a conditioned reward.
Be your own boss. You own your choices. If you want the pie, go have it (in moderation). My food for thought is having the pie just because it’s Thanksgiving. That may not be the best reason to have pie.
Enjoy your Thanksgiving, and pie if you choose. On Friday, continue on with your life. Thursday was another day. Not a ‘bad’ or ‘cheat day’. It was a day.
Continuous motion is easier to maintain than new momentum from a dead stop. Your mindset determines if Thursday - and the days after- are steps in your journey, or a halt. Enjoy that day, and all of them.
For more info on Nutrition, drop me a line: firstname.lastname@example.org. I teach athletes how to use nutrition as a performance enhancer, and help all people with their food or body challenges. Specializing in performance, women’s coaching, and body composition changes.
Ashley Blake, MA, is a Strength Coach, Precision Nutrition Coach, and Women's Coaching Specialist.
USAT-1, USAC-3, USRowing-2, USMS-2.
Meet the coach