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AIM: Kickoff to the Eating Season

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Ah, fall.  There are so many things to love about fall.  It’s my favorite season for many reasons. I love the foliage, cooler weather, football and, of course, all the wonderful foods that come about in fall.

 

There seem to be 2 schools of thought once fall hits.  It seems either you have done a fresh new start or are packing it in until the new year. I have always kind of viewed Halloween as the kickoff to the eating season. Of course, Halloween candy is in the stores in September (why???) and chances are if you buy it, you eat it.  Then there is Halloween, football parties and we sail right into Thanksgiving, Hanukkah, Christmas, New Year’s, etc.   It sure can be an eating trap.  While food definitely is for fuel, it’s also a big part of being social with others.  It’s not the only reason to get together, but food brings a lot of pleasure to gatherings.

Most long-time blog readers know of my love for candy corn.  I adore this stuff and always have.  It’s so funny that many people associate me with candy corn.  Or maybe that isn’t funny and just sad…I don’t know.

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I used to head into fall and do lots of baking, eating lots of candy corn, buying Halloween candy that I loved and eating it.  Not minding if there weren’t many trick or treaters because then I could eat the leftovers. Now, I don’t do that so much.  I don’t bake a ton anymore.  Even though I love baking (and eating it), I find I do better when I go out and get something as a treat like cupcakes when I go riding rather than having things at home.  So, baking happens a lot less.

Fall is also the time I have to start rethinking my exercise program.  Bike rides become limited from lack of daylight, colder temps, rain, and I have to pull in my weekend eating when I am not putting 50 miles on the bike.  That takes some adjustment and I can have a tantrum about that.

I will indulge in fall treats, but portion control is *everything*. Yes, I can have a pumpkin muffin, but I only need one.  Yes, I can make a nice stew, but I need to portion out a serving and not be having seconds and thirds just because it is cold out.  I love eggnog, but I make a challenge to myself to not drink any until eggnog season, which is Thanksgiving Day to me.  So despite all the food being pushed on me early by the grocery stores (QUIT IT!!!), I will do it in my own time.

There are also plenty of ways to bring all those fall flavors in without being super indulgent.  I eat pumpkin all year, but I do go into pumpkin overdrive in the fall.  I love to have pumpkin oats or add pumpkin to yogurt.  We often do crustless pumpkin pie to eat, because the crust is where most of the calories come in – and to be honest, I don’t care about the crust.   There are wonderful root vegetables to roast, delicious soups and stews – hello crockpot!  Again, it’s all about portion control.

My goal is to not gain weight this fall.  It’s an easy trap to fall into.  There will be times where I do fall down, but one fall doesn’t mean I have to skid into the new year in a haze of eggnog and pumpkin rolls.

Here are links to a few of my favorite fall eats in my regular diet:

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Make sure you read more  at my fellow AIMers’ blogs for their thoughts on this topic!

Lynn @ Lynn’s Weigh

Debby @ Debby Weighs in

Shelley @ My Journey to Fit

Cammy @ The Tippy Toe Diet

AIM: Adventures in Maintenance is Lynn, Lori, Debby, Shelley, and Cammy, former weight-loss bloggers who now write about life in maintenance. We formed AIM to work together to turn up the volume on the issues facing people in weight maintenance. We publish a post on the same topic on the first Monday of each month. Let us know if there is a topic you would like us to address!

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14 comments to AIM: Kickoff to the Eating Season

  • I love this: “…and I have to pull in my weekend eating when I am not putting 50 miles on the bike. That takes some adjustment and I can have a tantrum about that.” What kinds of things do you do to “adjust”? I’m having a very difficult time with that right now. Self-discipline isn’t working like it used to! The child in me is running amok over the mom in me.
    Lynn´s last blog post ..AIM: Kickoff to the Eating Season

  • Biz

    It is kind of funny that I do think about you when I see candy corn in the grocery stores! I have never liked it, but give me a snickers and I am happy! Not only are they pushing the Halloween season so early, last week I was at Sam’s Club and they were already piping Christmas music!

    I have a goal to lost 10 pounds this “Eating Season” so I don’t slide down the eating slope – I hope to keep that goal in site so I don’t get sucked in!
    Biz´s last blog post ..Whirlwind Weekend!

  • It’s a great post Lori because it is so true – many people “give up” during the holiday season instead of just doing some portion control & making choices of what they want the most vs, having everything. If you can just maintain during the craziness – it is a win! If you go crazy, many have trouble getting back to it come January. Why not just keep the regular life going with exercise & healthy eating & make the choices of which treats you will enjoy vs enjoying every last thing & feeling like crap after.. winking
    Jody – Fit at 55´s last blog post ..Lots of Gratitude on Monday!

  • I’m with you. While I don’t really view this as an eating season, there are a few things I make that we really only have this time of year. So portion control really IS everything for me. I’m lucky too, in that if I make a dessert, I can generally count on Mr. Helen to scarf it up lol! I have vowed to make this the fall/winter/holiday season I don’t gain weight!
    Helen´s last blog post ..That’s Life.

  • I deliberately did not mention candy corn in my post today because I knew you’d have it covered, LOL! Right with you on the grocery stores pushing this stuff earlier and earlier…it’s crazy.

    Interesting that fall signals a reduction in exercise for you, while (normally) for me, mine ramps up. Cool weather is a good thing for us, plus snow isn’t an issue, thankfully.
    Shelley B´s last blog post ..AIM: Kickoff to the Eating Season

  • I know it’s fall when Lori posts a picture of candy corn! LOL! Haven’t tried the Pumpkin Cranberry Oat Bars. Have all ingredients…sounds like a great thing to do this afternoon!
    Sharon´s last blog post ..Playing The Waiting Game!

  • Luckily our eating season is shorter than yours, for example we don’t celebrate Halloween like you do. Most of the eating is done on numerous little Christmas parties before Christmas, on Christmas and then New Year.

    Because I always spend my holidays with my family, not at my home, stocking with holiday foods isn’t much of a problem either. Though last year I mostly ate chocolate because my parents didn’t have any “normal” foods available..

    In my opinion you would be better off if you just mailed your candy corn to me. I can give you my mailing address! happy
    Satu´s last blog post ..Wrapping up September

  • I have an unofficial rule that I can only eat “free” candy corn. They don’t sell single serving bags, so I get my fix when someone has some out on a counter. I got this year’s serving at the quilt show this past weekend. It wasn’t the best brand though. What’s wrong with these people??

    Your description of how you used to be sounds a lot like me. We’re different now in that I would rather be able to eat my low cal baked goods more often rather than indulging less frequently on the more decadent “real” baked goods. I also think maybe you have more control than me. I’m a little afraid that I would eat the decadent stuff a lot more often.
    debby´s last blog post ..AIM: Kickoff to the Eating Season

  • You touched on something I think is important in that understanding what it is you most love about a seasonal treat (or any treat, really) and focusing on creating that taste or feel or smell in a new way helps control the calories and satisfy the desire. While it’s not a seasonal food, my flatbread pizza does that for me. Satisfies my taste for pizza, but at about 1/4 of the calories in a regular slice.
    Cammy@TippyToeDiet´s last blog post ..AIM: Kickoff to the Eating Season

  • We have several fall birthdays in our family as well as December ones so that just adds more celebrating with food days on top of the holidays! I make healthier versions of my favorite foods to satisfy my taste buds.

    My mom used to make a sweet and salty fall snack mix of salted peanuts and candy corn – it’s crack in a bowl!
    Tami @Nutmeg Notebook´s last blog post ..African Quinoa Peanut Stew

  • As I said on Shelley’s blog yesterday: we celebrate “Sinterklaas” on December 5th. Candy for that can already be bought in stores since September, ridiculous!

    The past years I don’t really do “holiday overeating” anymore. Not because I’m on a diet or something, I just don’t want to. I used to eat a lot around Christmas: the days before up till the New Year. Nowadays we eat more on both Christmas days but eat normal the days around. I hardly buy candy or other treats for the holidays anymore. I prefer making it myself and since I don’t always feel like baking … well that’s a plus happy
    Fran´s last blog post ..Sunday October 6, 2013: Herfstboswandeling Austerlitz

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