There was an informative seminar at my gym last Saturday called Little Black Dress that aims to help patrons of the gym to keep on track during the upcoming holiday season. We all know (well, I know) how temptation tends to rear its ugly head during the festive time of year. Carol sings, tree trimming parties, work parties and holiday soirees all usually come with food galore and libations a plenty. Some tips from the seminar included:
- adding fizzy water to alcoholic beverages
- drinking water before and during parties
- eating a full meal before the gathering to be full and avoid mindless snacking or to encourage snacking in moderation.
- continuing with your exercise regimen as normal, regardless of the season. Avoid the old, “it’s the holidays, I can slack off” mentality. My gym offers exciting new classes this season to keep people coming.
I took some good pointers back home with me from the seminar, ready to abandon the holiday mentality stated above. One thing I pondered as I walked home in the brisk November wind, was applying these tips all year round. The name of the seminar, Little Black Dress, made me remember my days of endless, counter-productive crash dieting. Usually, there was “a reason” I was dieting, but I was usually not alone. I have heard the same reasons over and over again from other people too, friends, family, random people on the train, numerous diet commercials. I have to lose the weight to fit into that little black dress, for my hot date, for the 10th reunion, to make my ex envious, for my wedding, for bikini season and on and on. I have been there, done that time and time again and personally it was always a temporary solution. I was more committed to “the reason,” rather than to a sincere lifestyle change.
There is currently a reality show on TV about women scorned who lose weight and transform their appearance as a way of getting even with the men who wronged them. At the end of the show, the men reunite with the ex girlfriends who have transformed from over-weight to svelte from extreme boot camp and changing their diet. The now slim ladies give the men a, “take a good look at me now” attitude, and usually leave the men with their jaws on the floor. The gals are looking good and enjoy rubbing salt in their ex’s wounds. Now I can only hope that these ladies made this extreme lifestyle change for themselves as well, and for the long haul and not solely for showing up the men who left them chubby and heart-broken. There has to be an end to the reasons, because after that hot date what else is left? You wiped that smug look off your ex’s face, but now what? After that little black dress is hanging back in the closet and the party is long over, will the commitment still be there for an active, healthy lifestyle? For me, it was not. The reason had passed. I simply went back to bad diets and waited for the next reason.
This past summer, I blogged about wanting to look good on the beach in my bikini. Of course I did, most people do. Now though my reasons go beyond the beach and donning a two piece. My reasons are to feel good, with energy, vibrancy and strength. My reasons are to hopefully live a long life, with less chance of joint pain and disease. As I put my bikini away in my summer bin, may we kiss goodbye to the reasons and think about that long haul and all the rewards that come with it.