• Serena Marie RD

Thanksgiving Tips & Tricks




It’s the holiday season! Woohoo! I love this time of year. I love gatherings, I love food and I love making memories.


But with that said, I realize this time of year it is difficult to make health a priority. There are parties, cocktails and baked goods everywhere. And. There’s just more to do. More to do = more stress = less times for self-care when you need it most.


So how do I handle this season of indulging?


Well, with grace, self-love and understanding, of course! Repeat after me. In the pursuit of health, self-love and/or self-respect must always prevail.


You’re going to eat sugar. You’re going to skip a workout to sip cocktails with your friends. You’re going to forget where you parked while shopping for gifts and come home starving and tired and not want to cook. Just accept it. And now we can plan for it.


1. Look at the calendar.

Are there parties or events you actually don’t want to attend? Try saying, “Sorry, can’t make it.” You’ll feel like a million bucks when you do.


And if your social calendar is filled to the brim with parties you are seriously looking forward to, then good for you! I can hook you up with some tips!


Choose your parties. If you’re attending 3, 4, 5 parties this week with treats, I can already tell you that you’re not going to feel energized and happy if you over-indulge at all of them.


For the parties that just have meh-treats that aren't so special, then make sure you arrive to the scene feeling full and satisfied. Eat something delicious, filling and healthy. Starving people do not make healthy choices. And arrive to the scene ready to make better choices. Snack on crudite and protein instead of chips and cookies. Never snack out of bowls, but serve yourself a plate. Your brain needs to SEE the food in front of you to register that you’re full. Eat slowly and enjoy every bite.


But! What about the parties that you KNOW have the delish treats you look forward to all year? Well, go for it. For me, this is the "Zakreski Christmas Party." I look froward to it literally 364 days a year. I arrive to that party hungry (not starved, I never aim to feel starved) and eat plates of apps, dinner and dessert. And I don’t regret it. You may have 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 parties this holiday season that you LOOK FORWARD TO all year. I want you to live your best life at those parties.


2. Make movement a priority.


You know your friend who wants to get together to exchange gifts? Why not suggest attending a spin class or going for a run beforehand instead of grabbing dinner or dessert. It's a great way to bond AND spend time with your loved one. If you’re skipping workouts to cook turkey or wrap gifts, that’s okay. But you can still try to sneak in a walk at work. Or download the free Fit-On app and squeeze in a ten minute workout.


3. Alcohol doesn’t have to add hundreds of calories to your day.


Beer, cocktails and wine can add literally 1000 calories to your day and not fill you up. Gah.

So let's strategize!

Always choose calorie free mixers. Water is my go-to but seltzer, or even diet soda, works too. Add fruit slices to sweeten your bevvie.


Choose low calorie spirits like tequila, vodka or gin. My go-to is gin + water + lemon + lime.


I also am a big fan of the do-it-yourself-wine-spritzer. This is a great way to save money too! I order a glass of white wine or rose and a glass of seltzer. I add seltzer to the glass to make a spritzer, and I keep topping the wine glass off with more seltzer as I drink it. I save money and calories because it takes me twice as long to drink, but its only one glass of wine total!


4. Have self-compassion.


Its okay to eat cookies, cake, and mashed potatoes. It’s okay to enjoy the scrumptious act of eating. There is NOTHING wrong with you. Any and every thing you eat this holiday season, eat it with a smile on your face. Eat it slowly, deliberately and savor it. Remember, that as you start to feel full while eating grandma’s pumpkin pie, that you have permission to eat pie again tomorrow. Put your fork down when you’re full (cause no body enjoys that “I’m so full I need to unbutton my pants feeling” anyway amiright) and push your plate away.

There’s no food in the world you can’t have more of tomorrow. Always eat with that facts in the back of your mind. It sounds silly, but when you’re dieting and having a “cheat day,” you start to eat with this rushed attitude like you KNOW you can’t eat this stuff again tomorrow. And then you overeat. And then you feel cruddy. And I want you to feel fabulous, because you are fabulous.



Hope this helps. Its a lot of information because I care a lot about you having the best holiday season.


Send me an email at serena@serenamarierd.com and let me know if you use any of these tips. <3

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©2017 by Serena Marie RD. Images by Ralf Graebner