Christmas is a time of year that is more often than not filled with social events, which span over the whole of December, generally geared towards eating & drinking.
With this, the familiar feelings of guilt, anxiety and destructive thoughts around body image, training and food are synonymous with the Christmas season, so I thought I would do a blog post about I’m going to navigate through this time because I know a lot of people struggle as I did.
First & foremost, there’s no ‘navigating’ or ‘surviving’ to do. I have lived so much of my life trying to avoid social situations that involve drinking and eating off plan that it saddens me to think about how much I have missed out on and I refuse to continue to do so.
Christmas is a time for connecting, reconnecting, letting go and enjoying everything that comes your way. I am a social person by nature. I love rooftop bars and summer drinks with a group of friends, BBQs, dinners, parties and beaches so the way I’m going to navigate around this time of year is simply to enjoy it.
I’m naturally a very organised person who loves routine and planning. I don’t do well with a spanner being thrown in the works and if I’ve got an event coming up, I like to know about it in advance. That’s just the way I am, so competing & disordered eating really augmented this strict, stringent lifestyle of mine.
Since I’ve recovered from disordered eating & ways of thinking I’m a lot more lenient in how I go about my fitness & social occasions. I still prioritise training, I still eat very healthily and relatively simply most of the time and I am still careful about how I treat my body but I make it work around other activities. When I’m out, I make healthy decisions 90% of the time and don’t stress about what sort of oil they’ve cooked the meat in.
If I have a lunch at work, (which is nearly every month) I’ll switch training to the morning or after I’ve finished. If I have something after work I’ll train at lunch or not at all. And I’ve come to learn that it’s really not the end of the world if something happens that wasn’t according to my plan. I survive, life goes on and more often than not, I’ve actually had fun in the process.
So this Christmas I’m really looking forward to being in a place of content and really making the most of it. There will be more drinking than usual and I’m looking forward to letting my hair down. There will be food I wouldn’t typically be interested so I’m excited about enjoying different flavours & textures and there will be new people to meet as well as old people to catch up with so I’m going to enjoy more socialising than working.
I’m going to see my family, in my happy place where I haven’t been for years and I’m not going to let stupid, pointless, critical thoughts get in the way in enjoying it.
So what if come January I weigh a few kgs more or I’ve lost a little bit of my fitness because, these are practically tangible things that I can get back and make up for within a few weeks, if I feel like I want to. But the memories created around this time of really last a lifetime & there is no way to get them back if they’re missed.
Christmas is a time for rejuvenation, evaluation, and letting go, so that’s exactly how I’m going to navigate my way through. And I couldn’t be more thrilled.