Birthdays, Parties and Celebrations: How to celebrate and be true to your health


Q: How do you stay healthy and still celebrate with all the 'party food'?

A: This might seem like the question that nobody is asking at the beginning of the year. But it's a very important one. Because it's a topic that many don't develop a plan for because all the big holidays (Thanksgiving, Christmas, etc.) have passed. But what can happen is that we are all on board with pursuing our health in January UNTIL that first ladies night out comes along, or a promotion at work, or our niece turns ONE (and a kid only turns one once right!) or the sports championship game (something tells me carrots and celery without wings isn't going to cut it for the crowd)! Before we know it we have deviated from our straight and narrow course of listening to what our bodies NEED and are soon feeding and justifying what it WANTS.  

Whether it’s the winter holidays, spring celebrations, summer parties or the numerous family gatherings that focus around food, these occasions do not have to be a time to throw your healthy eating to the curb. Learning how to tackle each day’s temptations as they come has been helpful for me. 

All of my family’s birthday land in the Summer.  This means a lot of opportunity to PAR-TAY!  My husband’s birthday is July 6th so we always have his family over for a cookout and fireworks. While I plan the food menu, I make sure that I offer healthy options for myself and my family. Besides the traditional Wisconsin Brats & Burgers, I have also serve chicken breasts. I make my own potato salad instead of buying it from a deli so that I can control the ingredients. I make sure I have A LOT of baby carrots (without dip) very close to me so I can pop those in my mouth for a crunchy snack versus the chips and taco dip that my husband insists on having.

Yes, there are moments where my taste buds want the taco dip, but the feeling I get after saying NO to the dip and YES to the carrots is WONDERFUL and TASTY in it’s own right!

I am stronger than the taco dip and so are you!

To carry on with tradition, my Mother-in-law always makes one of her famous tortes, usually Oreo Torte since it’s my husband’s favorite.  I will serve the torte to our guests, but skip myself since I don’t choose to fuel my body with that treat.  The best part is, no one even notices that I skip having a piece.  And, if they do notice, they don’t say anything.  They know that this is who I am and they respect my choice.  I also realize that I don’t need to eat the birthday cake to enjoy the birthday. It is more about the people at the party, being together and creating memories.

It’s a great feeling to feel “IN CHARGE “ when you pass up the sugar and junk!

I'm human, I have cravings. And I do indulge those desires every now and again. But, then I compensate for it the next day, or the next meal even. For example, I go for an extra bike ride, I eat smaller portions for meals, I eat more veggies! My BOD E TALK tells me it has had enough junk and it needs the healthy options again. When we have a mentality of “Compensation not Justification” then we can truly eat and celebrate in a balanced way that gives us rewards, both on and off the scale.

LIFE IS GOOD! Reward your healthy body with healthy foods and ENJOY LIFE!

Here is to a January mentality ALL year long! 

You are worth it. 

Executive BOD E TALK Coach, Nikki Kennedy