South Beach Diet - Post Holiday Lessons Learned

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01-04-2008, 12:30 PM
I've been on SB for 7 mos, and during that time, I've been to birthday parties, out to dinner, on vacation, Thanksgiving, and my birthday without having too much trouble staying on plan. Yes, I had some glitches here and there, but it was always just one thing, and I got right back on plan. Christmas however, was another story. I decided for the holiday I would just try to maintain, to stay on plan as much as possible, but to allow some treats here and there. After the first cookie, this plan turned into a 10 day free for all. I lost 4 lbs in the first part of December, and gained some of that back (I refuse to weigh until the end of Ph1, so I'm not sure exactly how much), but technically I think I met my goal of maintaining through December. But it was such a scary, out-of-control feeling and I was amazed that I could totally revert back to my old habits so quickly. I can't tell you how relieved I am to be back on plan and back in control. I was so afraid I had blown it and lost my SB mojo forever!

Next year at this time, I plan to be at or near my goal weight. I feel like I will need a better plan to get me through the holidays. I wanted to put this on 3fc so I'll remember next year, and also to get input from chicks that handled it better (or worse) than I did. Next year, I resolve:

No treats that aren't SB legal - a few sugarplums, chocolate cherry truffles, okay, cookies and fudge, not allowed!

Avoid all cookie exchange parties.

All bad food gifts will go right into the trash.

I will not keep batches of treats in the house.

All candy for kids' stockings will be stuff I don't like.

All non-holiday event days are just regular, on-plan days. The holiday "season" doesn't mean every day is special.

Exercise is more important this time than ever (this totally went out the window this year).

What do you chicks think?

01-04-2008, 12:37 PM
Wow Schmoodle very well written. You have set your mind toward a goal and will stop for nothing until you reach it. That is awesome will power you have. Good luck! I will be cheering :cheer2: you on the whole way

01-04-2008, 12:40 PM
Sounds great!

DH and I both did ph1 before the holidays and while he continued to lose, I maintained through. Our plan was to stick to the plan except 2 planned cheats, Christmas Eve at ihop and Christmas dinner with Fried Turkey, egg noodles, and pie (the off plan portion). Ihop turned out to be a disaster for me, I couldn't eat what I ordered and ended up feeling sick after but DH woofed his down, no problem. Christmas dinner I skipped the noodles but had dark meat and a piece of pumpkin pie. This was a PLANNED cheat and I don't feel guilty about them at all.

I went to one church dinner after the kids Christmas play and ate a brownie without even thinking about it. However, I didn't take that as an ok to have another since I already went off plan. I think as long as you have a plan and stick to it 99%, you are good to go. It's when you go somewhere without a plan or cheat uexpectedly and then rationalize a snowball effect, you are in trouble.

DH has a piece of REAL candy every other day or so and he losing much faster than I am. It's frustrating but I know he doesn't have my medical problems and he is not me! It was hard to get used to in the beginning but I have stopped comparing my eating habits to his.

Just MHO :)

01-04-2008, 12:47 PM
Schmoodle, I completely agree with you, the last two weeks I decided I would just maintain and the cookie monster took over- I thought I had banished him.....I ended up gaining weight and felt totally yucky- I am so glad to be back on track and I believe next year I am with you op the whole time except for dinner on Christmas day.

01-04-2008, 01:20 PM
schmoodle, I feel the same way. Maybe that was why I was not as impressed with my weight lost as my dr. was. I was wondering how many of the other sb chicks that this holiday season was their second and did it different from their first holiday season?:?: I will surely try next Christmas to stay more on plan.:crossed: My goal is to make it to next Christmas on plan with all the added benefits.

little chick
01-04-2008, 01:36 PM
Well I have to agree with you Schmoodle , I had avoided the scales the whole holiday season, probably since Thanksgiving. Thinking that I was maintaining and not gaining. Not sure why when my clothes were feeling snugger that I didn't clue in. I didn't bake, I didn't buy any candy I liked except for one box of chocolates. My MIL made my favorite treat which I shared with the family. ( I normally hide it ) Well guess what I have gained 12 pounds since I last weighed myself which was before Thanksgiving. Next year no excuses. I will allow myself one piece of my favorite snack my MIL makes and one Chocolate ( a favorite ) and that is it. I will exercise and not gain like this again. I am only harming myself. Let remind each other of this next christmas season.

01-04-2008, 01:53 PM
littlechick, it's a pact!

little chick
01-04-2008, 03:02 PM
Great, we can do it !!!!!!!

Bionic Beach Babe
01-04-2008, 04:46 PM
I agree with all of you here. The holidays got all of us away from SB. But now this is a new year and we are on a roll...and perhaps ( I hope so) the next Holiday coming up (Easter) we will be stronger. We will make that weight loss this year!!!! Good Luck to you all.

01-04-2008, 08:20 PM
I was feeling really racked with fear prior to the holidays. The first holiday party I feel that I aced. I decided to "try" a modified version of the Phase 2 SBD for the month of December. I had been following WW Flex Plan but I was stumped and feeling discouraged. I began reading different books and what was on this website under this food plan. I still have some questions but maybe as I read they will get answered.

I just wanted to see if I could follow it and I did. I lost 1 lb a week and I ate several pieces of homemade fudge each day for the last two weeks of the month. However, I did decide to not indulge in any other sweets or treats other than the odd candy cane here and there. It convinced me to follow through on the Phase 1 which I began on January 1. I have lost 2 lbs since then. I weighed this morning and I just wanted to see. I changed my weight lose ticker back to 0 because of changing food plans. Whatever I lose from now on will be because of the SBD.

The only thing I am trying to undo is being careful when I eat because I was counting points before. I plan on following this food plan for the rest of my life so I am really trying to do this as well as I can. According to the SBD website which I poured over a couple of weeks ago, it sounds like you can have chocolate cake, garlic bread, etc. "on occasion". I said to my DH, do you think they are just saying that to sooth dieters who are worried they will never eat forbidden foods again? I don't think that is right either. We want facts not fantasy!

Instead, I plan on figuring out ways that I can eat foods that are on plan and then eat them instead---hopefully, with a smile on my face. As for birthday cake, my birthday goal this year is to lose 55 lbs. and that is the third week of July. I will be out of the obese BMI for my height.

I think, the no sugar is the way to go for me. My mom is diabetic and I have noticed that the rash I have had difficulty getting rid that was around my "unmentionables" is now gone. Hmmm, sugar in my urine, I think so. That was a scary thought since I haven't been checked for diabetes in years!! I think that is one indication that I am on the right plan for me and I need to be doing what I am doing.

Here's to reasons for staying on what works for us.:carrot:

01-04-2008, 10:31 PM
pamatga, sounds like you are doing really well. I have to say I do think you can have your chocolate cake or garlic bread on occasion if you plan for it and do it right. I just don't see how I could possibly say that I won't ever eat any of those "bad" things again. but that's different from what happened last week, which is I gave myself permission to go off plan and as a result I felt it necessary to eat treats every time they were put in front of me. For me "on occasion" would probably mean once or twice a year. When I had treats before, I had only one, planned for it, ate protein or fiber or fat with it or before it, and that was the end of it. No harm done and no cravings as a result.
I don't know much about any other diet plans, but obviously I am a big fan of SBD, which I have stuck to when I never believed I could stick with any plan.

01-05-2008, 12:13 AM
Schmoodle I think your plan sounds great, but I have to tell you how impressed I am with your success. Your success of persistence. You didn't make bad choices, go off plan and give up. You made choices, went off plan as planned and got right back to Ph 1 without missing a beat. That's extremely impressive and shows your dedication.
Oh and how about 1 candy cane per kid's stocking next year. If they only get one a piece they'll eat that up quick ;)

01-05-2008, 03:51 AM
Our kids got dried apricots, clementines, graham crachers, and yogurt raisins (the *real* treat!) in their stockings this year. They sure don't need the candy, and I don't need their hyperactivity or the left-overs!

I had a downward spiral from this summer when we went back home until Thanksgiving and got myself back together doing Phase 1 starting the first of December. I plan to do that again next year (the Phase 1 after Thanksgiving, not the downward spiral at the end of the summer!). It helped me refocus myself, cut out the sugar cravings right before all of the temptations started, and gain some self-control back.

Pre-Thanksgiving, I had a couple days where I planned a "cheat" and then it would turn into a week of not paying attention to what I was eating. For me, it's not the planning of the *cheat* that matters, it's the planning of the NEXT MEAL OR SNACK that is important. I figured that out this Christmas. I can have a piece of pumpkin pie on Christmas as long as I already know I'm having a veggie omelet for breakfast the next day, a salad for lunch, and portobello burgers for dinner, or whatever. I have to plan the next step so I don't let myself spiral downward.

You are strong! Look how far you've come! I think next year you should post on your fridge a before and current photo, and that alone would be enough to keep you honest!


01-07-2008, 10:47 AM
Good idea Kara on the planning. My girls got lots and lots of SF gum in their stockings and 1 little M&M man with mini-m&m's. My downfall was the lack of planning as well. Up until 2 wks before Christmas I had kept my journal / meal planner faithfully and had lost 2.5 pounds in Dec. Then the wheels came off - here I have no idea why though, except that my DH brought home lots of goodies from work that he'd been sent as gifts (luckily he gave lots of it away). I ended up gaining 3 lbs (5.5 if you count gaining back those 2.5 I had lost - darn it ! :( )
anyway, thankfully I'm back on p1 and looks like I'm going to do it the whole 2 weeks. Down 2 so far. Still Smoodle I think I'm going to print off your plan and tape it to my desk so I will remember NEXT YEAR !

01-08-2008, 03:16 PM
schmoodle, great bunch of ideas for future holidays. Like you, my exercise went right out the window. I plan and hold 3 parties at my house during the space of one week during the Christmas holidays, so carving out time for the treadmill just didn't happen. It stinks because I really need that to feel 'energized', but I think the fact that I was working my butt off in the kitchen (and cleaning in between) kept me from gaining weight.

As for the holiday food... I did great, for the most part. I think Christmas Eve is easy for me cuz I hate the food my in-laws serve (hahahahaha). Christmas evening at our home was great, my husband and I made sure we served plenty of SBD-friendly foods for our buffet:carrot:! Plus, I'm always moving around a lot, making sure everyone is happy, so I don't pick a lot at my own parties.

Then, we had a formal Christmas (sit-down) with my side of the family a few days later, and I definitely splurged on this meal (can you say veal cutlet? and homemade Ravioli?), but I don't feel one bit guilty, it was one meal. New Years Eve, I actually felt rather ill from not drinking enough fluids, so, didn't really feel like eating anything at our hors duerves party.

My biggest downfall of the season... my sweet, well-meaning brothers gave me candy (not knowing I was on SB), and it was the stuff from childhood, some of my FAVORITES! Stuff they had to go out of their way to find. I did soooooo well with all those meals and parties, only to eat handfuls of candy each night for the past week (which I'd hidden in my closet in my bedroom~), thus sabataging any weight loss this week!! UGH!!!!!!!!

So, I second the motion to make exercise a priority.

I would add to that, any candy given to me, must stay out in the open where my kids will help dwindle the supply, or maybe I will freeze it so I cannot help myself non-stop, night after night until it's gone. Better yet, maybe I'll suggest they give me CANDLES! hahaha

Weighing myself EVERY DAY during the holidays helped too, because then I couldn't be in denial of what I was putting in my mouth.

I also froze my cookie platters as soon as I baked/assembled them. Then, I pulled them out for each party, and after the party, sent them home w/ folks. That helped a ton. My only cookie transgression was the day I made ricotta cookies and helped myself to a spoonful of the dough (= one cookie). It was worth it!:D

Schmoodle, I know you will succeed, because you are analizing what went WRONG and making sure it goes RIGHT next time. If we all do that, we will all eventually make that goal weight!!:cool:

01-08-2008, 04:16 PM
Schmoodle- Great advice! Thank you for posting those hints for getting past holiday road blocks.

One thing I do differently is I "regift" the homemade desserts gifts. My entire family including the in-law side knows I am diabetic, but my sister-in-law always sends us a huge tin of homemade lemon cookies of some sort coated in white sugar. I don't even open the tin. I just bring it with me to an office party, or a dinner on my side of the family for the kids to enjoy. I hate throwing away food, but I will toss a sweet item if I do not know an appropriate person to give it to.