Thanksgiving Rewind 2017

I had a fantastic Thanksgiving, and I hope you did too! My day began with a great workout – the Louisville (Colorado) 5k Turkey Trot. It was my fifth time doing this race, and my sister Sarah, 9-year-old niece Allison, and friend Lauren joined in too.

The changed the route this year, so there was some new scenery, which was a nice surprise. I found myself really huffing and puffing during the run, thanks to the altitude, but I kept running as best I could. It’s an untimed race, but I timed myself, and I finished in roughly 28 minutes, 50 seconds. It’s not a PR, but it was about three minutes faster than last year.

It was a beautiful day, clear and warm (I ran in a long-sleeve t-shirt) – a stark difference from two years ago, when the race was held in the middle of an icy blizzard.

As soon as I crossed the finish line, I started walking the route backwards, scanning the crowd of runners (and there were thousands of people participating). I had walked around a third of a mile when I came across Sarah, Lauren and Allison, and then I joined them as they finished. They were all going at Allison’s pace, and she ended up improving upon her time from last year by over 6 minutes!

Doing the Turkey Trot fulfilled one of my annual Thanksgiving day goals. Every year, I take a pledge with four rules that help me get through Thanksgiving without completely derailing my weight loss and fitness efforts. One of those rules is to get some exercise.

Another rule is to photograph everything I eat during my Thanksgiving meal, so I can share them here, as a way to stay accountable. The past few years I’ve photographed everything I’ve eaten all day, and I did that again this year.

My day became with a banana and apple, which I ate before the race.

After the race, I ate egg whites (with cream cheese and chipotle spices), some smoked salmon, and a couple tomato slices…

…and a pear.

I made two things for Thanksgiving. One was a veggie platter as an appetizer, which I decked out to look like a turkey.

That’s a spinach artichoke dip (store-bought) in the bowl, but the real purpose of this close-up is to show the details in my veggie turkey!

Bell pepper head, carrot legs and beak, olive eyes.

Another of my rules is to not mindlessly graze on food (and put it on plates instead), but I made an exception for the veggie platter, because they’re veggies. I only ate dip on two celery stalks, but I ate a lot of veggies in total.

There were other appetizers: chips and dip, and a baked brie with crackers, but I skipped them. Instead, I ate some honey-roasted mixed nuts. Throughout the afternoon and evening, I ate three small handfuls this size:

They were very good – very similar to candied nuts.

My brother-in-law Justin handles many of the main Thanksgiving dishes, and he did a stellar job. My fourth rule is no second helpings – and I stuck to it completely this year. First course: Justin’s oyster soup, with a piece of pumpkin spice challah bread, which my cousin Lavender made.

My main plate had all the usual suspects: turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes, gravy, sweet potatoes, cranberry sauce, green bean casserole, and Brussels sprouts (which were the second thing I made for the meal; sauteed with olive oil, balsamic vinegar, salt and pepper).

For dessert, I had a single chocolate-covered caramel, small slices of apple cake and pecan pie…

…and I went back for a small slice of pumpkin pie.

(That doesn’t count as seconds, because I didn’t get pumpkin pie the first time – loophole!)

There was lots of catching up with family and friends before and after dinner (Sarah and Justin hosted 16 people!), and some of us played a game of Risk that evening. I also got to hang out with Coco, the newest addition to Sarah and Justin’s family. She’s 6 months old and absolutely adorable.

And there you have it! Another Thanksgiving devoid of mindless overeating, food comas, or immense guilt or regret. Truth be told, I really like the structure my rules provide, and I end up enjoying the day a lot more than I think I would without them!

Keep It Up, David!


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