Bye Bye Holidays
Hoping everyone had a fun, fantastic, exciting and relaxing mix of Holiday eventfulness or lack thereof. Whatever it was that you did, that it most suited your moods and needs. Since the holidays were shortened into one compact week, Saturday to the next weeks Sunday, there was no time to languish. You had to seize that holiday time with both hands and feet to get the most out of it.
Holidays for me mean visiting family, since they live in another country (Canada) this is only a biannual event and therefore more meaningful. I have to inhale everyone to their essence and then painfully let go. Because it’s a large family it takes concentration and a lot of energy, especially because there are a growing number of children and I certainly don’t want to miss any of the details of their development. I also want them to remember me meaningfully until the next time I see them in six months. Holiday shopping helps.
With family being the central focus of the holidays all the other holiday concerns melt away. Though in the end after we arrived back in New York and I stepped back on my weight scale and I realized something very important. I’m sure you remember my first “diet” experiment which was ‘ Atkins’ and its terrible results. I have since brought the carbs back into my daily regime focusing once again on healthy, whole grains, veggies galore plus lean proteins. Also I am trying to eat more meals with smaller portions for blood sugar regulation, meaning no blood sugar spikes that trigger insulin which triggers cortisol causing fat storage around the abdomen. I can usually make time for four meals a day. So this years results from Holiday foods were astounding because my weight hadn’t changed at all. Whereas last year when I had stopped the Atkins I had gained four pounds over the holidays. Here’s the reason why I had such different results. It wasn’t because this time around I was more disciplined and controlled. It also wasn’t because I avoided food. It was because my body was used to the carbs which are a necessary component of daily nutrients so I didn’t have this overreaction with water retention to the extra carbs.
I have to tell you here that my brothers wife Bonnie is an amazing cook. I strongly advised her to share her gifts and take up her talents professionally. Anything she made I had to try because I knew how fantastic it would be. Though I admit she uses sugar and some kind of white flour and butters I allow anything she makes into my stomach because it is glorious and therefore has to be good for me. I know its not rational but the scale doesn’t lie and I gained not a pound. I also had only a few days of eating these foods but enough to have done damage last year.
Another part of the mysterious weight patterns is that once my body got used to the carbs again with a healthy balanced regime, my metabolism found its homeostasis, a set point where the body wants to stay. Yes it’s a couple pounds over where I was when on Atkins but it is now healthy and balanced and amazingly easy to maintain…as my Holiday experience showed. Workouts? Well okay I squeezed in a couple, I wasn’t sedentary and walked outside with my mother in eight inches of snow and howling winds for an hour one day. Which I couldn’t have done while on Atkins due to lack of energy.
Now I’m not telling you to go out with reckless abandon and eat whatever tastes good. In your day to day routine discipline and control tempered with regular exercise are your mainstays to health, fitness and keeping young. The good thing about eating carbs is that during Holidays you can kick your feet up, enjoy yourself, relax and make the most of what life has to offer.