Happy Independence Day! I thought I’d talk about holiday/vacation eating in this post since we’ll have plenty of opportunities to break our boundaries today.
It’s easy to break boundaries on holidays and vacations because we have all kinds of things working against us: We’re out of our normal routines. We’re surrounded by people who are pigging out. There’s good food everywhere we look. And we feel like we have a right to eat because, after all, it’s a holiday!
If you want to follow your boundaries during vacations and holidays, you’ll have to be diligent. Here are three strategies you can use to fight holiday/vacation temptation:
- Prepare with truth early in the day. If you’re on vacation, try to do it every morning of your vacation.
- Never go without boundaries. This will help you avoid the “it’s a holiday, I can eat whatever I want syndrome.” If you’re determined to eat more than normal, don’t give up boundaries altogether – just adjust them temporarily. Tell yourself you can eat three meals and two snacks instead of one or 2500 calories instead of 1200. The key is to eat with control and make it through the holiday or vacation without giving in to reckless eating. (And preferably without gaining weight.) Use whatever boundaries will give you the best chance of accomplishing that purpose. Don’t change your boundaries if you think it will mess you up.
- Focus on the people rather than the food. I used to think I couldn’t have fun on holidays or vacations if I couldn’t eat with abandon. In reality, I enjoy them far more if I eat with control. Not to mention the fact that God wants me to focus on loving the people I’m with – not on loving the food I’m with!
Here are some questions you can use to prepare your mind each morning of the holiday or vacation. Try to write out the answers if you can manage it.
Questions for Your Journal
- Do you want to gain, lose, or maintain your weight on this vacation/holiday?
- What will you need to do to accomplish your goal?
- Will eating as much as you want make the vacation/holiday more fun? Explain, taking all factors into consideration.
- What usually happens when you eat as much as you want on holidays and vacations?
- Do you want that to happen?
- Will you need to modify your boundaries during this vacation/holiday to make them easier to follow?
- What do you think would be the most effective boundaries to use?
- Are boundaries easy to follow, or do you usually have to give up something to follow them?
- What will have to give up to follow your boundaries this time?
- What will you gain if you follow your boundaries?
- When you think of what you’ll gain, is it worth the sacrifice?
Note: These questions are from I Deserve a Donut (And Other Lies That Make You Eat). If you’d like a 30 day weight loss Bible study, check out Taste for Truth: A 30 Day Weight Loss Bible Study.
Anne Mateer (@AnneMateer) says
Great post. My husband and I have dealt with this twice in the past few months. One of things that helped us was being sure to not vacation from exercise. We either worked out at the gym in our hotel or took stairs instead of the elevator or made sure we took concentrated walks and didn’t just assume sight-seeing walking was enough. This way, we could enjoy our food a little more than usual but still within bounds and without the kind of regret that usually accompanies such indulgence. We did great on one vacation, so-so on the other, but both were much better than previous years!
That’s a great idea. My favorite family vacations are hiking/camping trips. Lots of fresh air and exercise and great times visiting while we walk.
love, love, love these questions! Thank you! I’m putting them in my journal for future reference as well as this upcoming holiday!
Barb Raveling says
Great, Michelle! I’m glad they were helpful. :)
Shelia Stewart says
Are you working on an android app for your questions?
I think it would be helpful to have the app.
Barb Raveling says
Hi Sheila, Sorry, no, I’m not working on one at this point. The apps are expensive to make so I haven’t pursued making an android yet. I do have the questions available in paperback and Kindle, though. I might get something out on android early next year. Will put it on the blog if I do! Thanks for asking.
Darla Schroeder says
I just discovered you in the last month and have been enjoying your podcasts. I started your 30 day weight loss Bible study here on your blog last week. Today was my Day 8 and this is so timely as Thanksgiving and Christmas are just around the corner, plus we are planning a family vacation over the holidays! I love all the treats and goodies that we only get this time of year, but your questions here have really helped me think about how I want this holiday season to go. I have worked through the questions and plan to review these often over the next month or so. Thank you.
Barb Raveling says
That’s so great, Darla. Hope the questions and Bible verses help you through the holidays with eating! It’s such a hard time to follow our boundaries! Have a wonderful Thanksgiving and Christmas!