I’m going to parties this weekend, next weekend, and one the week after that. And that doesn’t include lunch out with my dad, or my brother and nephew coming to town. (Can you say obligatory foray to Casa Bonita? It’s not great food, but they keep bringing you hot-from-the-oven sopapillas. And who doesn’t love raising that cute little flag?! And cliff divers! And Black Bart’s Cave!)
It’s almost impossible to eat right with all that temptation for me, a bear with so very little self-control. I am proud that I’ve never gotten my head stuck in a jar of honey, though, so I guess that’s something. I tend to put myself in the “I eat right most of the time so I don’t worry about the occasional splurge” camp. Problem is, sometimes there are more splurges than eating-right-most-of-the-time times, so I’ve developed some strategies along the way.
First, don’t skip meals to allow for attending a party or some other activity where you think you’ll want to stuff your face. (Which is, of course, the definition of “party,” right?) Instead, eat normally throughout the day. When you get to the party, be as mindful as possible about portions, how the dishes are prepared, and try to assess the calories in everything. Only eat the really spectacular stuff, but think “nibbles” rather than “platefuls.”
Don’t waste your time on the store bought birthday cake with the lard frosting. Instead, go for the good stuff. Shrimp cocktail … homemade dark chocolate truffles … caviar. Nibbles, though. And go slowly, allowing plenty of time between nibbles.
Then relax! Have fun. Move away from the buffet. Talk more than you eat or drink. Meet interesting people. Learn something new about someone you already know. Good parties don’t come around often enough so make the most of them when they do.
And tomorrow? Don’t beat yourself up over whatever transgression(s) you committed at the party. Get back to your 400 healthy calories and make time for a marvelous workout where you recall the funny/stupid/endearing/romantic/fascinating things that happened yesterday.
If you’re really worried about the food that will be served, bring a low-cal dish of something. (Plenty of ideas in the Lazy Low Cal Lifestyle cookbooks! Just sayin …) The hostess will appreciate it and you’ll have insurance there will be something you can eat guilt-free.
Remember, parties aren’t about the food. They’re about the people you get to hang out with.
What was the best party you ever attended? What made it so special? Have you raised that cute little flag at Casa Bonita? Would you like to cliff dive and splash folks who are eating their dinner?