How To Be Conscious This Christmas
"Not overly full, nor did she feel like she needed to un-button her trousers and adjust her knickers out of her bum!"
Christmas Day was always an excuse for me to eat myself stupid, thankfully now I realise that it didn't do me any favours. I would carry a lot of guilt and shame that led to excessive brutal exercise sessions for days and days after. I think once I actually went out and ran 6miles on Boxing Day just because I felt so ashamed of what I had consumed, sadly it was the only way I could forgive myself. There is absolutely nothing wrong with exercising throughout the Christmas period I will be exercising through the holidays for sure. But what I realise now is back then exercise felt like a form of abuse. I think a lot of people use Christmas as a genuine excuse to eat themselves silly, in reality this might not actually be an issue for everyone. A lot of people don't have any sort of physical or emotional attachment to food, BUT some of us do. Therefore that's why I wrote a little story guide to help you through the festive season! Enjoy 😬
Meet Florence (Flo), Wife and Mother of 2...
It's Christmas Day and the family have already had breakfast which was, scrambled eggs, smoked salmon and sourdough toast washed down with some bucks fizz (fizz for breakfast I mean it's Christmas Day why not!). Flo has opted to take a short walk with the dogs whilst the Turkey was cooks and she has decided to drag her two children along with her whilst hubby John gets the veg prepped. Flo and the kids took a short 20min stroll around the block down to the stream and back again.
Christmas Dinner is served it smells divine, the bowls of festive food are passed round the table. Flo eyeballs the food around her and she makes a conscious decision to go make better choices this year.
- Vegetables- Flo first of all fills her plate with veggies, carrots, sprouts, parsnips, sprouts and so on. Almost half of her plate is filled.
- Meat- They have opted for Turkey this year. Flo loves the dark meat but knowing this has higher calories (do due the fat in darker cuts of meat) she takes a bit of meat off the leg, and then a small palm size of Turkey breast. Pigs in blankets can't be missed out on so she takes just 1.
- Potatoes- Having nabbed her best friends' Roast Potato recipe Florence knows how good these potatoes are so she takes 2 small ones. Then a tbsp of stuffing.
- Finally the gravy is poured on top, and a tbsp of cranberry sauce.
As Florence looks around she smiles and raises her glass, "lets begin the feast!" she commands! As everyone delves in she notices how quick they eat, cramming in the potatoes and pigs in blankets, "they haven't even bloody touched the veg" she laughs to herself.
Florence begins with the turkey and a bit of stuffing first, she savours it chewing it slowly. After some turkey she tucks in to the fresh vegetables. Florence wolfs these down because she's pretty damn hungry, but surprisingly after she pops the last sprout in to her mouth she notices a how her tummy is feeling slightly fuller. She eats the pig in blanket and a bit more turkey, finally finishing with the roast potato. Florence is full but not overly full, nor did she feel like she needed to un-button her trousers and adjust her knickers out of her bum!
She stops and puts her knife and fork down and has a few sips of water and some wine.
She takes a moment to look around her, it was at no surprise to her that most of the veg left and all of the potatoes have been demolished.
After a minute or so she finds herself questioning her next actions "I guess I could eat a bit more? I mean there is plenty left!" she weighs up her options; eat more now and feel stuffed OR stop now and have room for some pudding in an hour or so.
Florence reminds herself of how sick and ill she felt from having seconds last year. She closes her knife and fork and sits back, Florence is content.
As the dishes get wrapped up in cling film saved for Boxing Day Florence feels great. "Lots of veg and meat left for tomorrow and I can cope with more of that!"
Pudding is served about an hour later, the kids go balls deep (lol sorry had to) serving themselves a questionable amount of Christmas pudding and Chocolate Brownie, John hates Christmas pudding. Florence takes a small serving of Christmas pudding and some brandy butter, (my mouth is watering literally whilst typing this!) and slowly savours every bite, she feels the warmth of the pudding slide down her neck and in to her tummy. "If I only get to eat this once a year I am savouring every bite" - she thinks. Once again Florence notices she is rather full, she leaves some pudding in her bowl and sits back, "I'm done in!" she says and laughs. Knackered and content with her choice to stop at that Florence orders the children to clear the table and heads to the lounge to watch some crap TV and sets up the Christmas board games.
After a few hours of lounging, it's still light outside. Florence decides to get out of the house whilst everyone is amusing themselves with their new toys/gadgets.
"I'm going out for 10 with the dogs!" she says.
No one bats an eye lid.
A short ten minute walk allows her to feel comfortable again, she has time to think things over. "I made some pretty awesome choices today, I didn't eat till I felt sick or silly full, I ate everything I wanted and I enjoyed it!" she praises herself. However Florence knew that once she entered the house she would be faced with the next challenge.
Nibbles, cheese and crackers and chocolates.
Reflecting on this for a while Florence remembers a time when this would have been a real 'f*ck it bucket' (the one and only bucket that contains all of the f*cks that you decided not to give). "Not this year" she mutters to herself.
Everyone opens their Christmas chocolates and hands them round, begrudgingly. Hands are quicker than lightening snatching their favourite flavour chocolates, out comes the cheese and biscuits...."oh my so much food!" Florence hesitates.
It's now been 4 hours since lunch and pudding, she does feel a little peckish.
Peckish - not hungry - peckish.
Florence has two options, she either goes balls deep (sorry I have such a way with words!) like the rest of her family OR she could have a small selection of her favourites.
Florence opts for the latter.
2 Ferrero rocher
2 Malteasters (celebrations)
1 slice of brie
1 slice of stilton
1 glass of wine.
After consuming just her favourites, she is happy, a little fuller than earlier, but happy. When more food and more wine is passed round she shakes her head and says "no thank you, I'm good".
And she truly is good!
This year was the year the Florence really focused on being concious, making sensible, wise and good choices. She practised her habits like any other normal day, and did not track a single calorie. Sure she might have eaten over her calorie allowance today but that doesn't have to continue for the next 2-3 days, in fact things go back to normal pretty quickly. The more she tuned in to her body and how she physically felt the more confident she became with making better choices. The more she listened to the noise jabbering in the back of her mind that commanded "go on have some more, your old self would have demolished that and then some" the more this encouraged her to actually not want to be THAT GIRL anymore.
So there we have it.
Christmas day in a nut shell.
It might be different for you, in fact it probably will be.
But the moral of story is...
*Try to distinguish your mind/conscious mind. Listening to the jibber jabber will leave you feeling frustrated and you'll feel closed off, like no one understands whats going on in you head and the battle you're going through. But in reality if we separate ourselves from our mind, and just bloody give yourself a moment you'll be able to become conscious and make mindful, better choices that don't result in you feeling fat, too full you feel uncomfortable and pissed as a fart (sounds like my season working abroad lol!).
Use this years Christmas as a benchmark, make a promise to yourself that you'll allow yourself to eat more and enjoy it, but prove to yourself that this year, just because it's Christmas doesn't mean you need to still be the girl you don't wish to be anymore.....