Every year, before Thanksgiving, there is always a gaggle of health articles that try to shame you into having the most lackluster but low-cal T-Day dinner possible. Only eat the white meat and throw away the skin! Topping your yams with marshmallows is like covering them with puffy death! Once, when I was a teenager, my dad was dating an anorexic woman who served dried-out chicken breasts, mashed potatoes made only with skim milk and salad with no dressing. That was it. Afterward my sister and I went to Taco Bell—it was the most depressing Thanksgiving ever. While it’s true that gorging yourself on fatty/creamy/sugar-frosted/white-flour-heavy foods is not the best idea for your gastrointestinal tract, there are ways you can make pigging out this one day of the year a little less painful on the waistline by taking action before the big event—the IE Weekly tells you how.
The theory here is that there are 3,500 calories in a pound. You have to eat that many calories in excess in order to gain a pound, or cut or burn that many calories in order to lose one. The following tips are designed to help you lose a pound over one week so that you have that pound to gain back at Thanksgiving if you so choose.
The first step is to go to a website like Active.com and figure out how many calories you need, considering the exercise you already get, to stay at your current weight. If you consider this number your base and then make the following adjustments, you should be able to drop around one pound by the time T-Day rolls around, giving you the opportunity to indulge in your favorite foods.
Indulgence—Nine-ounces of dark and white meat mixed, with the skin on, has about 600 calories.
Action—Run an extra two miles on three different days.
Indulgence—Three-fourths of a cup of homemade stuffing has about 300 calories.
Action—Have the small fries instead of the large fries.
Indulgence—Half a cup of yams made with butter, pineapple and marshmallow topping has about 400 calories.
Action—Lift weights for 30 minutes on two different days.
Indulgence—One cup mashed potatoes and a half-cup of giblet gravy is about 420 calories.
Action—Instead of one cup of orange juice every day, eat an orange.
Indulgence—Half a cup of green bean casserole with friend onions is about 240 calories.
Action—Play soccer for 40 minutes.
Indulgence—Two medium biscuits with a tablespoon of butter have about 560 calories.
Action—Skip the cream and sugar in your coffee for the entire week.
Indulgence—Half a cup of cranberry sauce has about 200 calories.
Action—Rake leaves, garden or dance for an hour.
Indulgence—Two four-ounce glasses of wine have about 180 calories.
Action—This week skip your nightly glass of vino twice.
Indulgence—One slice pumpkin pie (one-sixth of a nine-inch diameter pie) with a half-cup of real whipped cream has about 600 calories.
Action—Walk briskly for 30 minutes on three different days.