Have Your Turkey and Eat It Too

Well, it's the holidays. Officially.

Can I get a YAAAAAAS?

This morning was brought to you by an AM workout at The Bay Club, and a WHOLE LOT of coffee. A WHOLE LOT. Like my entire pot.

I ain't sorry.

We didn't do anything crazy this weekend to warrant said tiredness, but you know how it is first day back from vacation. My alarm may as well have been in the middle of the night. It's SO COLD OUT. (If you live in an actual cold climate just ignore me). We had a lot of family time, a lot of sleep, some sweating, a good amount of eating and drinking... and getting into the season of all things holiday. 

I couldn't be happier.

My parents host Thanksgiving at their house every year so we had a lovely stay-cation out in the 'burbs. I headed out Wednesday to help my mom with cooking, and is it just me, or does all the cooking get a lot more fun as we get older? It also gets way more exhausting so Wednesday night dinner is always take-out pizza (GF crust for moi) and wine.

Turkey day began with a long walk,  more cooking, welcoming Boyfriend and his mom over, wine, lots of great food, great conversation, a Thanksgiving evening viewing of War Dogs with everyone (surprisingly good - I love Miles Teller in anything), and me trying to stay awake through my food coma. 

I had booked a SoulCycle class for Friday morning mainly because my girl Steph was teaching a Survivor (and like hell I'd miss) and because I love a good sweat, whether it's the day after Thanksgiving or a random Tuesday morning. 

1-Minute Rant: By 7am Friday morning I'd already received multiple emails from multiple brands advertising "post-Thanksgiving juice cleanses" and "specials on class packs to burn off that turkey". STOP THE MADNESS, IT'S ONE MEAL. You didn't get in shape or get healthy from one meal. And you won't undo anything with one meal either. I've had weekend food/wine benders last a lot longer than that and no one is offering to help pull me out of it. ENJOY IT.

My family generally eats pretty clean - we do a roast Diestel Turkey, GF Sourdough Stuffing (Bread Srsly is EVERYTHING, no one knew muahaha), my mom's homemade Cranberry Sauce, Mashed Sweet and Regular Potatoes (guess what? you don't actually need to add a stick of butter to either, promise), Green Beans with Toasted Almonds, the Shredded Kale Salad from OhSheGlows (crowd favorite), Gravy (with cornstarch vs white flour to keep it GF) and for dessert? Flourless Chocolate Torte, Minimalist Baker's Creamy Pumpkin Pie Bars and Coconut Tahitian Vanilla Ice Cream. Decadent, indulgent, clean.

And like all the Rombauer and Justin Cab you can drink. 

Throughout the long weekend I went on a few long walks with my mom (it's our thing), a couple SoulCycle classes, and spent more time horizontal on the couch, under a blanket by the fire than I have in a looooong time. I freakin' loved it.

Today is hard.

So hard.

But, like Britney Spears in 2007, we will prevail. We've got ~3 weeks until Christmas break, and a shit load of holiday parties in between now and then to navigate, to dress up for, and a whole season of festivities to be on point for.

Whether or not you've had an indulgent weekend, or just want to start the week off right, do it. I kicked my own ass into gear this morning with a 7am workout, a healthy green smoothie and a packed lunch to keep me from dropping $15 on lunch.  I'm planning to get all my Christmas shopping done THIS WEEK (I know), and I'm tryin' not to blow the bank while I do it. (Besides, something has to pay for all those SoulCycle classes that even out my holiday revelry.)

I picked up Amanda Haas' Anti Inflammation Cookbook at Williams Sonoma the other day (she's a genius) and it's a great way to cook if you're feeling "poufy" after Turkey Day, or if you just try to eat clean and avoid gluten like I do. 

The trick is: 1) Cook for yourself between holiday functions and festivities and 2) MOVE every day. Even a walk. I walk every, single day for an hour. Sometimes it's broken up into 4, 15-minute walks. Sometimes it's an hour straight. Just move those legs, get your steps.

That's IT. It's pretty simple. Have your cake/wine/champagne/cookies... and button your jeans come January 2 too.

How was your Thanksgiving?

 

On Balance.

I get asked a fair amount how I "do it".

How I can commit to my (aggressive) workout schedule and never falter, and then only eat picture-perfect foods made with nothing but health, rainbows, and sunshine all day and all night.

You want to know how I "do it"?

I don't. For real.

Life is all about balance and moderation - even when it comes to workouts and nutrition. I'm very up-front about the fact that about a fraction of what I eat makes it onto my social media pages. A fraction. (This girl's got an appetite like a teenage boy folks.)

I try to balance my life like this:

  • Weekdays

    • Nutrition: Clean and balanced: smoothies, salads, lean protein, veggies, whole grains with minimal sugar and booze
    • Workouts: 2x cardio (usually SoulCycle) and 3x Pilates/Yoga
  • Weekends:

    • Nutrition: I typically eat the way I do during the week but I leave room for indulging, going out to eat, dessert, and most certainly, wine.
    • Workouts: I love to sleep in and get in a late morning run with boyfriend, a long coffee walk with a friend, or a SoulCycle class. If I can fit it in, a long yoga class is amazing when you don't have to rush off to something immediately after. But if I don't exercise all weekend? Just fine.

When we vacation, it's a holiday or a special occasion - I treat myself and I indulge in local specialities, wine, or homemade goodies. I don't think about it. I feel my best when I don't overdo the sugar, booze, gluten or dairy but I'm not opposed to every once and a while when the setting calls for it (or when I'm craving it). If someone makes their family's speciality, I'll try it, regardless of what's in it. If I've had a few I'm far more likely to reach for the cheese platter. I don't make a daily habit of it, but if it's there, (and if it's Mt. Tam Cheese), I'll probably have some (a lot.) 

Case in point - I'm usually not one for donuts but there's a time and a place, like when you're dancing your face off at a close friend's wedding and there's a donut bar and you wash it down with a glass of Pinot in between songs. Not an every day thing, but hot damn it hit the spot in that moment.

I also love to exercise on vacation - for once, I'm well rested and I've got time. On a beach? I love to run barefoot in the sand. (And I love the breakfast that comes right after it.) In cities I love to explore local fitness classes or go for a run to really take it all in - I've found the best discoveries running through Paris and London, and my favorite route in the world is the Central Park Reservoir. 

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The key is to not beat yourself up for not eating "perfectly" all the time - in your every day life or on a vacation. So you downed multiple baskets of chips and one too many margs while out with friends? I bet it was a hell of a night with people you love.

You went to Hawaii and didn't move from your lounge chair for 5 days? You obviously needed a break. Traveled to Europe for a week and lived off of chocolate croissants, steak frites, red wine, pasta and gelato without consuming a single vegetable? You walked around the city rather than going to your gym and doing your routine workout? Congratulations - you're living. 

Promise that green juice and your cardio conditioning class will be waiting for you when you get back.