88-Day Challenge: Nearing the Finish Line

bacon ornament tutorialThis is the second to last ’88-Day Challenge’ post. There are really only two weeks and some change left in 2013. Let that sink in. Remember, 74 days ago… when I was all like, “the time will fly… why not start now?” Remember that? Seems like yesterday and forever ago at the same time.

The past two weeks have been pretty good. Lots of runs (in fact I broke through a running plateau this week!)… but also some stress eating. I’ve pulled some late-night, homemade Crimmus crafting sessions and between that, packing, and winding everything down to come home, I have been less successful food-wise than I would have liked. Not turrible… but not superawesomeamazing either.

I write this post from Lavonia, Ga. I made it safely back to the home country… which makes me so happy… and a little apprehensive. I’ve worked really hard these past few months… and I know these next two weeks are going to be the toughest yet. I am a creature of habit, and when you throw me out of my day-to-day routine (and back into the most habit-laden settings) it is easy to justify going off the nutrition rails. Coralie has been talking a lot about celebrating the holidays, food-wise, on her own terms. I couldn’t agree more. It accurately conveys the attitude I’ve been feeling this holiday season. So, what does that mean? Celebrating the holidays on “my own terms” means, to me (at least) that I am going to enjoy the meals/treats/parties that only come once a year, savoring their timely appeal… but I am also still going to strive to work out and eat healthfully and mindfully at all other “normal” meals. I will try my hardest to limit the amount of holiday junk I eat… but not freak out if I occasionally don’t. The holidays are stressful enough that beating myself up over a glass of eggnog or imposing draconian rules about carbs just seems so unnecessary? Why heap even more stress (self-imposed even!!) on yourself when life is going to naturally do it for you right now?!

Since I know it is going to be hard, I flat-out asked my folks for help tonight (as we were enjoying decadent Cajun food, no less…). I didn’t ask them to shame me if they saw me eating a cookie. I didn’t ask them to play drill-sergeant… I just asked for their help and support… and maybe workout with me! I’ve learned in the past few years that it is silly to be disappointed in someone for not helping you when you never asked them to in the first place. The best way to get the right help is to specifically ask for it. Be specific in your requests. Novel/revolutionary idea, I know.

Everyone wants their holiday season to be perfect… and so much energy is expended (with decorating, the commercial crush, cooking, etc.) that it is so easy to lose sight of the wonder of the season. As much as I loved Coralie’s Favorite Things post (and may write my own later) the best gifts you can give this season are your understanding, patience, and forgiveness… towards yourself and others. Be kind and gentle, smile often, take deep breaths and pass this energy around. You never know when it will come back to you from someone else when you need it most.

Food for thought. If only I could eat thoughts for food! Hang in there, kids!

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