Of course Thanksgiving is a time for giving thanks, but let’s face it: celebrating Thanksgiving is all about the food. There’s Thanksgiving, Friendsgiving, second Thanksgiving (in some cases) and then there are leftovers to tackle, of course. Naturally, all you want to do is gobble it all up and take seconds and thirds. While there’s no problem in indulging, you might want to practice mindfulness on your few days off so bouncing back is a breeze. After all, we need to go back to work eventually.
1. Give Yourself A Break
Thankfully, we all have work off on Thanksgiving day and probably the day after. Make it a point to just sit back and relax, even if it’s just for a moment. After you’ve done this give yourself a real mental break. Sometimes indulging comes with a lot of accompanied guilt, which only makes you feel like you might as well just continue on your quest to devour everything in sight or plop down on the couch filled with doom and gloom. Know that this is definitely not the time to be fretting about calories or time not logged on the treadmill. It is, however, time to take a breather and enjoy the company of friends and family. Undoubtedly you will be bloated and your body will be feeling sluggish, but that doesn’t mean your mind should be bogged down by negative thoughts as well! Practice meditation and/or mindfulness.
2. Follow Your Routine
Take Thanksgiving off from any regular routine, but know that the next day you’ll get right back on the grind of things. This is especially the case for your gym and workout routine. Workout the day after or simply find a way to get your body moving so you are feeling tip-top by Monday. The longer your prolong working out and/or getting back to your daily activities, the longer you will feel less like yourself and harder it will be to get back on track. After all, even after Thanksgiving is over, we still have Christmas coming up! Don’t make this stretch an excuse to cancel your gym dates. If you are finding it extra hard to find motivation to workout the day after Thanksgiving, grab a few friends or family members and plan a group workout or excursion such as a hiking trip!
3. Don’t Skip Meals (Especially Not Breakfast!)
Not only should you continue to do your workouts, but you should definitely continue to eat your regular meals. Even on the day of Thanksgiving, make sure you eat your breakfast. If you skip it you will only be hungrier by dinner time – meaning that you will be more than ready to scarf down everything in sight.
4. Make Easy Substitutions
If you are helping out with the preparation of the Thanksgiving meal, make sure to make a few healthy substitutions here and there. For example, where a recipe calls for butter, you might be able to substitute coconut oil or at least cut back on it. Recipe calls for milk? Try almond or coconut milk instead. It’s all about these quick and easy substitutions or fixes that can be the difference between having a tummy ache and not having one later that night.
5. Hold Back on Seconds
Sometimes it’s so hard to resist! However, if you can restrain, do. Serve yourself one of everything you want, but try to hold back on getting seconds. A better rule of thumb to go by is to simply stop eating once you have become full. Everything is delicious in moderation, but that uncomfortable, swollen belly feeling is something we can all pass up on. That being said, if you do consume more than your body weight in pie, turkey, or sides, go back to Tip #1. Give yourself a break. One day of indulgence will not ruin your waistline for a lifetime, and if ever there was a time to go a little wild it would definitely be Turkey day. Just know that you’ll have to get back to it tomorrow!
6. Get Your Greens & Water In
This is a tip you really should be incorporating in your everyday life, but it can’t hurt to stress it again. Make sure you have at least 2 liters of water on Thanksgiving. With all the sodium and sugar you will likely be ingesting, it will be good to stay properly hydrated so your body can process all of it with ease. Greens are also essential as they are a nutrient-dense, low-calorie option for tricking your body into thinking you are full. We can’t get enough of ’em!
7. Go Easy On The Alcohol
You always want to have a glass (or two) of vino on the holidays, and you should definitely join in on the fun. However, make sure not to get too rowdy. Even though we forget about all of this while under the influence of our favorite beverages, cocktails and booze are filled with calories and excess sugar. Opt for red wine or champagne and stop at 2 or 3. This will also help you prevent those drunken munchies from happening later on that night!
8. Go For A Walk After Your Meal
Once your meal is over and you feel like you can stand without keeling over (jokes) go for a nice little jaunt with your loved ones. This will help get your digestion moving along and have you feeling less “stuffed”. In addition, making a positive intention will only positively influence your holiday. Taking a walk will also get you away from the food that you will so achingly want to get another bite of!
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What healthy Thanksgiving tips do you have?