Thanksgiving is Just Around the Corner…

18 Nov

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Thanksgiving is just around the corner, but let’s be honest: I’ve been thinking about it since early October, and I’m already thinking about Christmas. Hey, it’s the malls fault for being all decorated and pretty with lights and Christmas trees. But when it’s all said and done, Thanksgiving is and always has been my absolute favorite holiday. The delicious smells, the wonderful feeling of family and the fact that I go into a turkey coma every year (no matter how much I tell myself to slow down) is all part of the joy of Thanksgiving. 

But even though I almost always have to unbutton my pants come dessert, I’d be lying if I said I didn’t try to keep my Thanksgiving just a bit healthier. After all, I’m not trying to gain 10 pounds in one sitting and feel like absolute crap the next day. That would be doing my body no good. So this year in particular, I’m working on adding a little extra healthy oomph to my favorite holiday, and that I will share with you…

#1 I’m running my first ever Turkey Trot on Thanksgiving Day: I’ll be running the 5-mile Manchester Road Race, but these types of Turkey Trots are all over the place, so I suggest you sign up to0! They are fun, packed with people and it takes the edge of the actual running part of it. To make it even more exciting, my sister and I are dressing up as elves with green tights, elf hats and all! To prep for the race, I’ve been running 3 miles a day with Core Fusion Body Sculpt twice a week, so it’s keeping me in shape before Turkey Day as well. 

#2 I’ll be making a side dish that actually tastes good: Last year I tried to go all, “healthy, healthy” on everyone and ended up making the most disgusting side dishes…ever. My family of course ate them to be nice, but even I could see they had little to no flavor. My gluten free stuffing I tried to invent tasted like dog food. It was that bad. This year, I’m going to concentrate on making wholesome, nutritious food instead of low-cal, “healthy” crap. I’m definitely going to trim down the classic sweet potato pie that everyone knows and loves, and am definitely going to dabble in concocting some gluten free savory cupcakes from the BabyCakes Cookbook I got last year as a gift. Red Velvet cupcakes [see above] are at the top of my list to try this year! 

#3 Or Fake it if you can’t bake it: Not everyone loves to cook, and there is no shame in that. Lots of places allow you to pre-order Thanksgiving sides and desserts so you don’t have to touch a pan. For instance, Healthy Habits Kitchen in Wellesley, MA is running an “Everything But the Turkey” Package, which includes 3 appetizers, 3 side dishes and 2 desserts. How’s that for easy and efficient? Pick ‘n’ choose between tasty apps like Goat Cheese, Sundried Tomato & Olive Spread, Spinach & Feta Triangles and Pumpkin Chipotle Hummus. Side dishes include a Butternut Squash Casserole, Parmesan Mashed Potatoes, and Traditional Stuffing. Oh, and you can’t forget dessert, with favorites like Chocolate Bark and Gingerbread Spiked Pumpkin Pie. View their full menu here. Small servings for 4 cost $59 and full servings for 8 is $99, extremely affordable in my book for the amount of food you’re getting. 

#4 Eat Slowly: Sometimes I forget that the food is not going to fly away on me. I think we all could use a few deep breaths and short breaks throughout the feast. Enjoy your food, chat with aunt Sally who you haven’t seen all year and savor every bite. This meal only comes once a year, after all. Why rush it? 

What are your healthy Turkey Day tips? 

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6 Responses to “Thanksgiving is Just Around the Corner…”

  1. Amanda November 18, 2010 at 10:53 am #

    I’ve been on the fence about whether to go super healthy or just wing it and see what happens. Considering I am cooking the whole meal, I better stick to some old fashioned recipes I know to stay safe. I do have an awesome gluten-free stuffing recipe though that I got from a friend. I haven’t tried it yet, but she swears by it. I can email it to you if you would like. It’s made with gluten-free waffles. Have a fun week! I’m getting so excited.

    • healthychicks November 18, 2010 at 10:59 am #

      Ooooh can you please send that my way? I’d LOVE to try that out this year! My email is healthychicks.rachel@gmail.com. And I say do a little healthy, a little savory. After all, it is a holiday and we deserve to treat ourselves now and then : )

  2. Jenny Jen November 18, 2010 at 11:18 am #

    In regards to eating slowly, I think so many twentysomething women – in prep for Thanksgiving and functions – often skip meals or don’t snack as much to “save calories” for the big dinner.

    Problem is, once the big dinner comes, their bodies are already in starvation mode. They feel weaker, moodier, and likely have a cramp in their empty-stomachs. The trick to eating slower and enjoying it in a mindful way is to not rid yourself of meals and snacks (fruits, veggies, nuts) throughout the day. Eat as you normally would, and you’ll actually be able to enjoy the joy that is Thanksgiving Dinner!

    • healthychicks November 18, 2010 at 11:27 am #

      Couldn’t agree more Jen! I know so many people who do this whether it’s before a holiday party or a big dinner out, then they end up eating double what they normally would. Women need to understand it’s OK to eat, in fact it’s doing wayyyyy more good than harm to eat healthy snacks/normal meals throughout the day before a big event. Then you’ll make more mindful, cautious choices because you’ll be aware of your body. My favorite things to snack on are peanut butter and celery/apple, egg whites omelets for breakfast, fresh fruit and unsalted nuts. Good point Jen!

  3. jsutera654 November 18, 2010 at 1:39 pm #

    I soooo need to learn to eat slower. I try to make a concerted effort to but during the holidays it gets much harder with how many options and treats there are! But I’m trying, and that’s what counts right? 😉 I’m running a 5mile turkey trot too – I do it every year now and love it. Sets the day off on the right footing and is super fun too!

  4. Kelly November 18, 2010 at 6:03 pm #

    Great tips. I’m still thinking about running a turkey trot- my only problem is I hate running in the cold so I want to see a weather report first 🙂 I always work out on Thanksgiving though, it makes a big difference.

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