Take a look around. The Halloween decorations are gone. A cardboard turkey with a pop out tummy is overwhelmed by the Christmas decorations in shop windows. Red and green mini lights and white icicle lights are beginning to show up on front porches, ready to be plugged in as soon as the last piece of pumpkin pie is gobbled on Thanksgiving night.
Last year around this time, Merry, who has her own entertaining blog, Sheesh, posted a holiday survival quiz here at Cranky Fitness.
I warn you, the test is not for the faint of will power. The accompanying picture of a plate of brownies was enough to get me drooling.
If it wasn’t for the fruitcake question, I would have scored a perfect twelve, which far exceeds the perfect four that would indicate I have my holiday eating under control. So, thanks to Merry (and my personal history) I already know that I will taste, and perhaps eat too much of the brownies, the homemade fudge, the pies and every home made cookie in sight. I will avoid only the fruitcake.
Since I am sure I’m going to overeat, I can accept, enjoy, and risk rolling back all the progress I have made this year or I can devise a plan, a strategy to minimize the damage. I see you shaking your head. A plan? A strategy? Come on, Ter, we know all that stuff. Avoid alcohol. Eat the raw veggies instead of the chips.
Yep, we do know all those ideas and I have followed them faithfully and still come up on the wrong side of the scale on New Year’s Day. So my strategy this year involves two basics.
First, I will plan and execute Perfect Days. I have already printed out blank calendar pages for the weeks beginning with Sunday, November 23rd and ending on Saturday, January 3rd. I filled in the dates I know will be a problem for me: Thanksgiving, Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, New Years Eve, New Years Day. I called two friends who throw holiday parties I usually attend and, hooray, they already know the dates of their parties. On the calendar they go. Then I looked at my paydays and plugged in my shopping days accordingly. There are still plenty of empty boxes. I picked two each week and labeled them Perfect Days. On those days I will do my maximum exercise and my food will be high quality protein with lots of vegetables and a small portion of fruit. I do this not to give myself permission to pig out on party days, but to ward off any damage I might do while trying to be on my best behavior during social occasions.
Second, I will increase my exercise every day. Yes, every single day of the holiday season. I will keep moving. My efforts will be as simple as playing assistant hostess at every gathering. “Can I get you a refill?” “May I clear away your plate?” and as joyful as touring a different neighborhood (on foot) to take pleasure in the holiday lights. On shopping days I will have a large mug of veggie soup right before I leave the house. Then I will take a brisk half hour walk around the outside of the mall before I set one foot inside. I am counting on that combo to energize me to get in, get what I need and get out without needing a rest stop at the food court.
As part of my keep moving line of attack, I am enlisting your help. Those of you who visit us over at Women of Mystery know that I am proud as can be to have a story in this year’s Toys For Tots anthology, Dying In A Winter Wonderland published by Wolfmont Press. The anthology is written for adults and every story is light, festive and touches on one or more of the winter holidays: Christmas, Chanukah, Kwanzaa and the Winter Solstice.
Each of the stories, the editing service and the publishing service have been donated, so all of the proceeds garnered from sales of Dying In A Winter Wonderland will go directly to the Toys For Tots Foundation sponsored by the US Marine Corps Reserve.
Dying in A Winter Wonderland makes a perfect holiday gift for everyone on your list, friends and family alike. With all the proceeds going to provide holiday gifts for children in need, every purchase is a win-win. You can order from the publisher, (see above link) your local bookstore, or from Amazon.
For every copy of Dying In A Winter Wonderland you purchase, I will walk one mile between now and the New Year. Just contact me over at Women of Mystery and I will give you the date and time of your walk, so you can cheer me on, or better yet, join me.
So, please help me keep on my holiday exercise track, help Toys For Tots provide the gifts that will make the holiday season special for so many girls and boys, and help yourself by stocking up on a present that will be sure to delight.
Many thanks to Crabby and Merry for sharing their space with me and the Toys For Tots kids.