Friday, November 2, 2012

Singing Those Post-Halloween Candy Blues

Two days ago we bundled up our little Samurai and Fairy-Butterly-Princess for the yearly walk for candy. Although we only went trick or treating for about an hour, the kids both brought home quite a haul. Snickers. Reese's. Icky pink bubblegum. Kit Kats. Twix. Are you picking up what I'm putting down? Plenty of temptation and naughtiness for anyone (or any family) trying not to indulge their sweet tooth too much.

Maybe you fell prey the first night to "checking" your kids' candy bags, for their safety of course;) And along the way, a Snicker here or a Hershey's there just had to be sampled. And what kid is going to eat an Almond Joy, so you had that too (and by you I mean me). Suddenly you found yourself in a guilt-induced panic and shoved all the wrappers to the bottom of the garbage, because then the calories just don't count.

Determined to do better, you told yourself no more candy. And that lasted until 10am and you grabbed another Snickers because it really does satisfy. And then a Reese's because surely you burned it off somehow. And by the end of day you once again felt like you failed the post-Halloween candy test.

Day are you doing?

I'm a firm believer in a few things:
1. Chocolate (or select goodie of your choice) in small amounts is good for morale. A fun size bar is around 100 calories. That's like walking or jogging a mile, give or take. So one is probably going to be okay if the rest of your eating is healthy. More than that you are going to have to work off or pay the consequences. And note: it is much easier to consume 300 calories worth of fun size is much harder to get those 3 miles in.

2. If you are really, really trying to lose weight at the moment, it's best to steer clear completely. I am one that much too easily thinks one little bite won't hurt...and then it becomes 10. Or thinking that my morning workout burned way more calories than what it actually did. If you are trying to see the scale go down, for me it really did work best to cut out all the goodies for a time and slowly add them back in at a much smaller dosage once you hit your goal.

So how can you deal with temptation if it's lurking in a fake jackolantern basket?
1. Out of sight, out of mind. Put those puppies where you can't see them or easily reach them.

2. Set limits and follow them. In our house, that means one treat a day for everyone. We're trying to teach the kids neither to fear food nor be given to gluttony. That's about 100 calories or less per person.

3. If the limits aren't working (or if you are really serious about winning the losing battle)...flee, flee, flee temptation. Get it out of your sight. Get it out of the house if you need to. I  had to do this last year since I started my weight loss plan on Nov. 1. Not a bite. Not ever until I hit my goal.

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4. If your whole family needs to steer clear of the sweets, consider enlisting the help of a "switch witch" (or other clever name you come up with). Leave the candy out for the "witch", the next day the candy will be gone but a non-food prize will be there. Note: the candy must go directly in the outside garbage and throw the nastiest thing you can on it so you don't dumpster dive in a moment of chocolate craving. IT SHOULD NOT GO TO YOUR SECRET CANDY DRAWER.