Archives for the month of: December, 2012

In the December issue of Yoga Journal there is an article about ‘recapitulation’. The article states that in order to move forward, as so many of us aspire to do around New Years Day, we have to first relive and relinquish mistakes or lessons we’ve learned from times previous. The suggested practice is to discuss or journal about your past year and the challenges or near regrets you have, thus creating space for the resolutions you may be wanting to set.

Now I’m certain I’m not the only one who doesn’t love the idea of reliving moments in which I behaved less than graceful or that caused anyone else discomfort or resentment, but I do see this recapitulation as an appropriate step to moving forward.

There’s a saying among my yoga peeps that The Universe will give you the same lessons over and over again until you finally learn them. The challenge often times is actually being able to identify a life lesson, or to see the woods through the trees so to speak. What better way to get a little more clear than to spend some time recalling the memorable moments from the past year that make you think ‘I could have done that better’. Once we can identify those scenarios we have direction and intent. Then our New Year’s resolutions are practically made for us.

Consider, very simply, a to do list. You can either- keep adding things to the list and watch the list get longer and longer, or, you can cross things off as they get done and ease the stress of feeling you will never succeed.

I encourage you to try on this practice of recapitulation this year as you stop to set your intentions for 2013. Sit, breath, even meditate on the moments you remember that you didn’t do your best and simply let them go. Turn them in to opportunities to do better and to be a better you. Take advantage of the opportunity to start the New Year with clarity and freedom.

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Recently on The Today Show they claimed that the average weight gain from Thanksgiving to New Years is only 1 pound. Now this may not sound like a lot, but as someone who has lost 1 pound at a time over the last 7 months I can tell you its more than you realize. In fact, I would guess that the 1 pound could be just enough to leave us feeling more lethargic and sluggish than normal and lead us down a dirty spiral of holiday sweets and too much alcohol.  It could be enough to cause us to give up hope and fall victim, once again, to the ol’ New Years resolution to lose weight gig.

I’ve put together a list of 5 tips to help you avoid that 1 pound (or more) weight gain, and to help you maintain the control you have over your choices during this holiday season.

1. Enjoy instead of over-indulge. It is the holidays, but the party buffet table doesn’t have to win the battle. When you are presented with an array of desserts, or an overabundance of anything really, enjoy instead of over-indulge. Say there are three pies on the table: pumpkin, pecan, and apple. Chose the one you like the most and enjoy one piece. Truly there’s no reason to have all three. When we do that we end up eating more than one piece anyway. Chances are you’ve had the other two before and you will have another opportunity to enjoy them again. For now, give yourself the gift of guilt free dessert, just don’t over do it.

2. Be the DD. Adult beverages are synonymous with holiday parties… and calories too. When you are the DD you are doing yourself AND your friends a kindness. You save on calories by not drinking, they get a safe ride home. Win-win!

3. Calories in vs. Calories out. There’s no way around it- this is how we keep ourselves on track. Maybe you start  a new habit of logging your daily calories. There are apps out there that will let you set your daily calorie goals and track food as well as exertion- which is the other part of the equation…

4. Offset over eating with workouts. Instead of starving yourself the day after a big binge, get your workout on. Not eating is only going to hold your metabolism hostage and its not good for your brain either. Some great workouts to torch calories: try the insanity dvds, head up to red rocks, snowshoe an advanced trail. All of this takes us back to calories in vs. calories out.  You can manage this- I promise!

5. Dress Up. Whether you have several social events or you are just headed to the mall- dress up. That LBD or those skinny jeans are great ways to remind you to stay on track. It’s super motivating to look good. And when we look good we feel good.

Let me know what you think of these tips, or if you have a tip of your own to share!

Happy Holidays