For athletes, Thanksgiving is a super day to take a day off from exercise, relax with family and friends, and to carbo-load. Your muscles will benefit from having time to refuel, recover, and heal. As we all know, rest is a very important part of a training schedule.
The traditional Thanksgiving dinner offers the perfect combination of sports foods: abundant carbs (to fuel the muscles) and protein (to build and repair the muscles). The goal is consume three times more carbs than protein. Here is the line-up:
Carbs; mashed potato sweet potato stuffing squash turnip peas cranberry sauce stuffing apple pie pumpkin pie
By fueling well on Thanksgiving, your muscles will be ready to exercise hard on Friday. And when your workout is over and you are ready to refuel, why not enjoy a turkey sandwich with stuffing and cranberry sauce, some fruit from the cornucopia, and leftover apple pie. Yum!
With best wishes for a pleasant time with family and friends,
“I hate holidays like Thanksgiving … there’s so much food and all I do is eat too much,” complained one of my clients. Clearly, she was missing the point of the holiday! I encouraged her to put more focus on the PEOPLE and not the food. Yes, she would have the opportunity to enjoy a nice meal, but she could also enjoy the companionship of family and friends. By putting food on the bottom of the priority list, she might find that she could better enjoy the holiday.
If you are fretting about calories, remember that overeating on Thanksgiving is normal; it is not bad or wrong. Even “normal eaters” overeat, as do dieters and binge eaters. One extra-large meal will not ruin your life forever! And, if you pay attention to your hunger signals, you’ll discover the day after Thanksgiving you will not be very hungry; you will naturally choose to eat less (without enforcing a starvation diet).
I hope you have a nice holiday, find a few minutes to count your blessings (rather than count calories), and are able to be thankful for having a healthy body that allows you to enjoy an active lifestyle.
With Thanksgiving just around the corner, many "cooking challenged" athletes are trying to figure out how to make an apple pie. Here is a simple alternative—Apple Crisp! The recipe is far easier than making a pie, and just as tasty. Enjoy it!