Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Tuesday Ten: Lessons Learned

1.  I did just fine at the two birthday celebrations over the weekend.  Ate just enough, made the best choices out of what I was faced with and re-learned some good lessons, one of which was:

2.  Sometimes I just want to eat more because something tastes good.  It's no big emotional thing going on or some deep hidden reason.  It's just because it tastes good.  I know this because:

3.  There was a really delicious pasta at the Saturday party.  My plate consisted of about a 1 1/2 cups mixed salad, 1 piece of foccacia bread, 1 spoonful of the pasta.  When I started the plate, I was stomach-growling hungry.  Everything tasted good, but especially the pasta.  When I finished the plate, I wanted more of the pasta, simply because it was so good.  I said it out loud and the whole table of ten chimed in with how good that pasta was so:

4.  I got up and went a got a plate of just the pasta.  Now mind you, the plates they gave us were small -  salad plate size.  But still, I had served myself the plateful.  I went back to table and my phone rang.  I had to take the call but the room was small, noisy and crowded.  So I grabbed my jacket and stepped outside.  I was outside for about 6 or 7 minutes and when I came back in and sat down I realized:

5.  I actually felt full and though I knew the pasta would still taste good, eating it would be overeating and then I wouldn't feel good physically or emotionally.  So I pushed it away and that was that.  Additionally,

6.  I turned down the cake at the Friday party.  Mr. Helen loves cake so he jumped right up to get some when they served it.  I asked him for one bite of his and it really wasn't  that tasty so I just didn't get any.  I ate the cake on Saturday.  It was very good.  I enjoyed every bite because I was not overfull. So glad I didn't eat the second plate of pasta! Plus I was reminded of lesson number two:

7.  You don't have to eat food just because it's there.  On Thanksgiving, there will be lots of good tasting food, some of it things we only make for the holiday.  Some of the things I like, a lot.  Some of the things I don't really like all that much but have as spoonful of because it's there.  Which results in feeling stuffed.  Which I don't want to do.  As I was pondering my strategy,

8.  I read Lori's blog with her own Holiday Week Thoughts and was immediately thankful that she continues to blog her maintenance because she reinforced what I was thinking - and that reinforcement came from someone who is already a success story!  As I thought about her post, I decided,

9.  For the first time that I can remember, maybe ever, I am only going to eat the food I truly like.  For me that means no mashed potatoes, no sweet potato casserole, no turnips, no whipped squash, no bread stuffing.  But will include homemade cornbread stuffing, homemade rolls, and cranberry relish instead of jellied cranberry sauce with the can rings still imprinted in it.  If I'm not too full, I might even have a piece of pie, but ultimately,

10. If I don't have pie Thursday, I can have some Friday or Saturday or whenever because it doesn't have to be Thanksgiving if I really want a piece of pie.  What matters most is that I walk away on Thursday as satisfied emotionally and physically as I was this past weekend when I learned that second helpings are not equal to happiness but seeing a family member turn 80 is a really good thing.


  1. Great post, Helen. I'm approaching the holidays in a little different mind-set myself. I am hoping that the whole thing can become more about being together than about the food.

  2. Excellent post Helen! I plan on doing the same thing. Since we are only having one guest, I am not going to overdo the meal like I normally do. And I plan to keep up my exercise this week, even though its hard while being off of work!


  3. I was having this conversation with myself in my head this morning about Thanksgiving dinner. I love, love, love mashed potatoes and gravy. And I never ever make them. So? I'm going to eat some. And some of my mom's stuffing. But the rest? Meh. We'll see.

  4. Thanks for the timely post. I'll join you in only eating what I like and stopping when I start to get full. I wish that my favorite food was green beans instead of carbs.

    Happy Thanksgiving!

  5. Wow - great stuff. Excellent food for thought. The presence of a groaning board of food does not mean I have to eat it all. Sounds like some intuitive eating on the docket.

  6. I guess the picky eater in me all these years has always led me to eat only what I like at Thanksgiving. Unfortunately for the scale, what I like is stuffing, gravy, and turkey! Moderation, and not wanting to die after dinner are my goals this year.

    Agreeance on the pie - last year I saved a piece for breakfast (with as many men around here, I literally had to put my name on a piece or it would have been gone) - it was great, because I was actually hungry and really enjoyed the flavors!

    That said, your #s 2 - 6 really resounded with me. So very true, all of it. Glad you had such success with the party food! Oh - were both honorees surprised?

  7. I have the same problem, I keep eating because I like the way it tastes. I'm joining you in listening to my body and stopping when I'm full. I will enjoy the foods I like without any guilt and be cautious of when enough is enough! Great post!

  8. Wow. You did awesome this weekend! You are incredible. I mean it.

  9. I hope the person who made the cake in # 6 does not read your blog. You wrote that it really wasn't very tasty but how would you know if you didn't eat any?

    I look forward to the day when we can be, and are thankful every day instead of just once a year gorging ourselves on food as if it were our last meal. At least I won't be partaking in too much and for that, I am thankful.

  10. Great post. We should all eat what we enjoy and enjoy what we eat.

    Your #2 is something I have said a lot about eating a lot of something just because it tastes good. An intuitive eater told me that still was emotional eating because not all emotions are bad. I about bopped her one, but I suppose it is true.

  11. When I read about all the food that's usually served at Thanksgiving I'm almost glad we don't celebrate it :lol:

    I think you've made some smart choices over the weekend and I'm confident that you will make some more at Thanksgiving.

    Thanks for the advice today.

  12. LOVE this post.
    AND my husband loves the cranberry log, as he calls it. I bought him 3 cans yesterday. I also bought the real thing and will experiment with a recipe that doesn't have TOO much sugar but isn't so tart it burns your tongue off.
    Will keep you posted when I find it.

  13. Such good thoughts Helen. And especially good to hear how well you did at two parties! I am a little anxious about all the food that will be at the Thanksgiving potluck at work, because I really have a problem with overeating at work. But even if I overeat, I have to remember it is only one day. (Well, maybe two, since I am working tomorrow and there are likely to be goodies there.)

  14. Just popping back in to add my holiday good wishes. Helen, I am so thankful to have made your acquaintance. You are one of my pillars and I appreciate what you stand for and what you share. Have a happy thanksgiving and thank you.

  15. Yes! Yes! Yes! I love this post Helen and I can relate to it all! I only eat the foods I really love and I enjoy them with out guilt. It is so much more satisfying than stuffing my face with food just because!

    Thank you for sharing your thoughts and insights.

    I am grateful to have found your blog and I enjoy your posts, thoughts and the fact that you keep it real!

    Blessings to you and your family.

  16. Great tips Helen! I am for the first time in a long time, just going to try to concentrate on the people I will see and conversations. For people who don't struggle with their weight or have lost a bunch of weight, when they are invited to a party or event, they don't even think about the food, whereas most of us do! I am going to take your advice and just eat my favs, and leave the rest. AND, I can always have dessert another day...

    Have a super Thanksgiving!

  17. I really understand #2 and I really need to better understand #7.

  18. I read this just before Thanksgiving, and I put a lot of the same ideas into play. They definitely helped, so thank you. :)