Holiday non-guilt

To understand my need to recover from the holidays, one must understand our family holiday. Thanksgiving brings my Baby Bro and his family of five trickling in from California the Saturday prior, my nephew and his family of four from Oregon, my other nephew’s in-laws from California, plus the usual group of 15 plus already in Arizona. We range in age from eight months to 70+. Throw some dogs into the mix to stir the chaos as we move from house to house during the week. A week or so prior to the arrival of first guests, we formulate a Pfamily Pfun spreadsheet (the spelling is a play on the family name). Planned daily activities are interspersed with games, cooking, eating, and yes, drinking. The excitement and blessing of enjoying ones extended family is exhausting!! Hiding away after everyone leaves, I yield to a full day of lounging and simple chores and begin to feel recovered.

The tendency during holidays is to throw up my hands and suspend any attempt at exercise and good diet. A painful knee called for immediate attention, though, and knowing that yoga would relieve it, I attended a yoga class and RIPPED during this time. I also began some exercises to strengthen leg muscles which seem to resist strengthening. It was fun to have my niece “in-law” join us at RIPPED. Camaraderie in exercise is important: knowing that I will see friends and family in class pulls me out of bed as much as or more than the physical benefits.

Alas, today the Christmas-New Year’s season rush begins when we attend a holiday dinner theater with friends, and the calendar begins to fill. It is tempting to scratch exercise off my to-do list. Likewise, there is a tendency to be unforgiving toward one’s lack of self-discipline from Thanksgiving through New Year’s. Trading time with my family to workout and denying myself the taste of a favorite holiday food cracks any attempt at self-discipline leading to guilt but not to the gym. The snowballing list of loved ones lost to death inspires me to appreciate the time I have with people and to enjoy this Earth.

Note to Self: Give up the guilt. I am training for Life not a marathon. I workout so that I can enjoy activities with my friends and family. That is the best motivation.