How an Ex-Binge Eater Survives the Holidays

Hey I’m an reformed binge-eater!  Did you know that?  Now you do.  Want to know how I don’t binge during the holidays?  Well let me tell you a secret, I totally do binge.  Thanksgiving was last week.  The day before Thanksgiving I weighed the lowest I have since I rowed for UT.  Part of me was like “well, might as well not eat Thanksgiving dinner or I’ll ruin it”.  But the other part of me was like “NO, this is life and Thanksgiving only comes once a year and I’m going to enjoy it”.  So there’s that.  I went to my grandmother’s house for Thanksgiving with my cousins and handsome fella.  Not only did I eat a plate full of turkey, ham, mashed potatoes, hashbrown casserole, creamed corn, and rolls, but I went back for seconds (and a little bit of thirds).  Oh and I had fudge, cupcakes, and cheesecake for dessert.  Did I feel heavy and stuffed afterwards?  You bet your bottom dollar I did.  Did I feel guilty afterwards?  Nope, not a lick.    And you know what?  I lived.

my cousins are finally taller than me.

my cousins are finally taller than me.

I left feeling oversatisfied.  Technically dinner was a binge because I basically ate way past satisfaction and I ate in an uncontrollable manner.  But there was no guilt there because I really felt Thanksgiving Day was a day to indulge.  I saw lots of people on Instagram posting “healthy” concoctions of their meals and I’m not knocking that at all since staying on track takes a lot of willpower but I just went big and didn’t even care.

Although I didn’t feel bad on Thanksgiving Day for what I ate (or even the day after), I still chose to eat poorly in the days following including a Friday outing to a Mexican restaurant and a Saturday night date starting with REAL hot cocoa at a friend’s house followed by dinner at the Cheesecake Factory.   123cheesecake

homemade cocoa in an oversized cup?  yes, please.

homemade cocoa in an oversized cup? yes, please.

But today is a new day and my Momma and I were up this morning hitting the gym for a class called Pure Muscle.   Hopefully I did work my muscles because my arms are still hurting.  I ran another timed mile like I have done for the past 2 Mondays and today’s was in 9:07 which makes it 20 seconds faster than the first one I did two weeks ago.  I’m loving that Monday mile.  Tonight I’m heading back to the gym for spin class with the Biggest Winner team.  I love watching them step out of their comfort zones and I love helping my Momma.

Pure Muscle class.

Pure Muscle class.

So, while I chose to “binge” on Thanksgiving Day and eat whatever I wanted in unlimited amounts, I did not feel guilty.  That is a huge step because I spent months in therapy focused on the emotion of guilt related to eating.  Not feeling guilty is a major step in recovery.  The only thing I failed at was continuing to eat poorly in the days following.  My body felt heavy, my clothes fit tighter, and a few tears may have been shed yesterday but recognizing that it’s okay and to move on is a good realization.  Christmas is around the corner and of course I will indulge in the usual holiday treats but I’m going to work extra hard to not take home leftovers and to make sure the “bad” eating stays at the party and that the next day I get right back on track.  I lived through one holiday and I know I can live through another.  Being mindful that it is a holiday (one day) and not a month-long or even week-long thing will really help me come Christmas.  Bring it on!

How do you deal with food during the holiday season?  What did your Thanksgiving meal consist of?