There are many ways people countdown the days till Christmas.
There is the classic Advent Calendar countdown where there is something fun to do or eat each of the 25 days leading up to Christmas. Or what about the paper chain! I made one of those once in a countdown to meet Taylor (well, it wasn't a chain to countdown the days till Christmas, but I met Taylor a week after Christmas, so it was close enough). And then, we have the song we all love (well, all of us but my brother Charlie who hates all Christmas music): The 12 Days of Christmas.
There are many ways to countdown the days to Christmas and each way adds it's own fun and novelty to the whole Christmas season. This year, I have decided to make my own, personal countdown to Christmas Eve:
"25 Days of Avoiding Christmas Food and Treats"
And this joyous countdown will take place from today, November 29th, through December 23rd.
Today, I read that the average person gains 7 to 10 pounds between Thanksgiving and New Year's Day. And really, this is something I already knew, both from reading something similar in years past, and unfortunately, from experience (special thanks to Christmas Season 2009 - and if you didn't gain the Christmas weight last year, it's because I gained yours, too).
Normally, people just throw caution to the wind, eat what they want, and then join the millions of Americans who make a New Year's Resolution to lose the weight beginning January 1st. Well, I am going on vacation in February and if I follow the normal trend, I won't have the time it requires to lose the 7 to 10 Christmas pounds (let alone the 15+ pounds left over from last year's Christmas season) in order to get this body into a reasonably un-scary, bathing suit-wearing condition.
So, I have to start working towards my goal right now.
My goal is to not only avoid gaining the 7 to 10 Christmas pounds, but to also lose the recommended 1-2 pounds per week (with the help of WeightWatchers!! who by the way, has a new PointsPlus program -as of today- that is worth checking out if you like the WW program - it's how Jennifer Hudson lost all her weight).
My "25 Days of Avoiding Christmas Food and Treats" will involve me keeping track of all the wonderful, Christmas treats and foods that I am avoiding to meet my goal. And since I work in an office (aka: dumping grounds for unwanted edibles) I am pretty sure that, short of me being a hermit and sleeping all day (which has been known to happen), I will run into at least one Christmas treat-type-thing every day.
Today's avoided treat: a peppermint, chocolatey, almond bark yumminess.
Now, I have to clarify that I am not avoiding my normal treats. For example, I have these WW-friendly ice creams bars that I like and I will continue to eat those. This whole thing is my attempt to avoid the Christmas treats, cookies, breads, special mochas from coffee shops, candy canes... CANDY CANES!!!!! (okay, I just realized right now that this means avoiding candy canes *deep breath* I can do this)!
I know that some of you will want to tell me to just enjoy Christmas treats in moderation. Here is the problem. I don't DO moderation. I'm an all or nothing kind of girl. If I bake cookies, I don't eat one; I eat most. And for me to be successful at my long-term goal (to get this out of control body into a bathing suit-tolerant condition), I have to give myself strict parameters and specific guidelines. And part of this if having a list of don'ts. To be honest, this will be way easier if I avoid all of it, rather than try to be moderate with some of it.
Feel free to join me if you find yourself in a similar "I don't want to gain 7 to 10 pounds" situation. It won't be easy, but on January 1st, when all your friends and family wake up with clothes that are too tight and fighting the obligation to join the millions of other fluffy people at the over-crowded gym, you can smile. And eat a left over Christmas cookie without an ounce of guilt :)
Now **raising a glass** here's to hoping I don't fail miserably! **clink** :-/
Close friends and family, here is where your encouragement and support comes in handy!
Who's with me???