My birthday is today, but I started celebrating last week. I had a very specific plan of attack because I was determined not to go crazy and gain weight just because it’s my birthday. I didn’t want to feel stuffed and bloated from overeating. I wanted to celebrate but NOT totally pig out. Lots of people probably thought it was silly for me to worry about it the week of my birthday, but I am trying really hard to learn how to work splurges in without ruining my progress. That’s life, right? There will always be indulgences. I could ALWAYS find a reason to overeat or go off my plan. I want to be able to indulge but still stay on track.
I had a great week. I felt like I totally indulged (in my planned way), had multiple splurges, and still stayed within my weekly points. I ate out twice, had Starbucks twice, ate pizza and cheesecake bites at my birthday party, AND had donuts at work! (I had 1/2 of 2 different flavors so I could enjoy more than 1!)
In the past, I would have used my birthday as an excuse to OVER indulge ALL week long. The difference this year is that I did indulge, but not in excess. The days that were not part of my celebration were normal days. I just tried not to dip into my weekly points on those days in order to save them for the days that were celebrations. Knowing that I had an event coming up made it easier for me to stick to my plan the other days. There were numerous times this week that I said “No thanks. I’m saving up for pizza and cheesecake.” It helped to know that I wasn’t missing out on something…I was just choosing something else.
For the first time in a long time (possibly forever), my party was about the people and the celebration instead of about the food. I had planned and saved my weekly points so that I could have the pizza and cheesecake bites, so there was no stress in figuring out what or how much to eat. I was satisfied, but I wasn’t stuffed and uncomfortable like I have been so many times in the past.
The best part was not going home regretting my choices. I had a plan that I stuck to, and I was really proud of that. I enjoyed myself more BECAUSE of the plan. I knew I had budgeted for what I was having, so I just enjoyed it! I didn’t wake up the next morning feeling guilty or feeling like I had to be perfect to make up for overeating the day before. I woke up the next day feeling proud and motivated.
Now I feel like the holidays won’t be as stressful (at least with food) because I know that I can handle it. I may not have as much control over what I’m eating during Christmas, but I can control the choices I make the rest of the time. I can control my portions and my negative thoughts. I can control how I eat the rest of the week. I do NOT have to indulge for 7 days. I might indulge 1 or 2 days and that’s okay.
I feel much more at peace this year than I have other years, and I know a big part of that is being mindful with my eating. I just have to remind myself that when I do overindulge, I never feel good about it.
I remind myself: “Don’t sacrifice what you want most for what you want in the moment.” I have to keep reminding myself of this, over and over. I seem to have short term memory loss when it comes to food! 😀
The moral of the story is that you CAN enjoy yourself without being deprived and without regretting your choices the next day. It takes some introspection to figure out what is most important for you, but it is worth the effort!!