A side bow, a turtleneck, a vest and bangs that started all the way on the back of my head. Who's trendy now?

On Not Being Trendy

Date: November 28, 2012 at 9:03 am- by Ali- Comment(s): 101

Forget skinny jeans, boots and puggle puppies — do you know what’s trendy right now?

Being on a diet.

Exercising a lot.

Feeling “gross” amidst the holidays.

And “cleansing,” “hitting the reset button” or “getting back on track.”

Now if you know me at all, you know I’ve never been considered trendy, hip or in touch with what’s hot.

A side bow, a turtleneck, a vest and bangs that started all the way on the back of my head. Who’s trendy now?

(Photo stolen from Pamela, my second grade buddy who’s about to run her first half marathon in Las Vegas this weekend! Go wish her luck!)

Case in point: I wear legwarmers and think they’re amazing, both on the run and in the office. I cannot think of a single event or function where legwarmers wouldn’t be deemed appropriate.

So not only have I resisted the skinny jeans look (OK, it’s not just me resisting them — my thighs have always fought them as well) and held back from making a sure-to-be-regretted puggle puppy purchase, I’m also not on board with the latest “get back on track” trend that’s taking over Twitter and just about every blog post or magazine article that’s crossed my computer screen this week.

Thanks.

Really. Thanks for your tips about moderation and food guilt and how you “swear you enjoyed every bit of the holidays and just want to tighten things up now!”

But I’m all set. And I won’t be reading or following along or jumping on your run streaking bandwagons.

Like I said last year, I’m all about enjoying the holiday season (and, come on, every day of the year), and for me that often means eating sweet treats and drinking cool cocktails. And I’m sure as hell not about to pass up that third piece of brownie Nutella mousse cake (thanks, coworker) or ditch a ninth trip around the party buffet table because I’m desperately afraid of taking a bad photo come New Year’s Eve. You call it indulging, I call it “a normal day.”

I sense I’m being harsh and bitchy.

Look, I get it. I get the food guilt. I get the feeling of nastiness after a day, week or month of over-eating. It happens, and mostly it sucks. I don’t think anyone wakes up the Friday morning after Thanksgiving thinking, “Wow, that sixth piece of pie did wonders for my waistline!”

But…it’s OK. I swear it’s OK.

I’ll use myself an example to assure you I’m not trying to preach here: You may recall that I don’t do well with restriction. The “I bet you can’t eat just one” catchphrase may be the eventual title of my autobiography, and I don’t understand (or, honestly, trust) people who can buy a big cookie or ice cream sundae and not demolish the entire thing.

Since Labor Day, when I was released from the Hospital Of Fun, I’ve abandoned all rules of healthy living in favor of eating myself to the point of fullness during every single meal. It’s not ideal, and it shows. I was sick at the time and wasn’t at my “normal” weight, but I do know that I’ve gained 10–15 pounds since then.

The night of the CCFA event, I was told I have “horse legs.” The guy insists he meant it as a compliment because it means I’m “probably a good bike rider,” but after feeling not great about myself to begin with and then having to stand onstage in a little dress…yeah I wasn’t thrilled with his choice of words.

Fifteen pounds is a lot of weight to gain in just three months. And when you’re 5’5″, that weight shows itself just about everywhere. I’m carrying it in my face, my arms and most noticeably, my stomach. When I go to spin classes these days, my thighs rub up against the seat in a way they never used to, and I’ve quit trying to look nice at the office, instead opting for jeans and sweaters — or whatever fits — every day. Running feels harder, like I’m wearing a backpack or weights on my ankles, and you may have noticed I’ve been posting more pictures of Tyler and fewer photos of myself. (Want to see unflattering photos? I’ve got plenty! Also I recommend singing those sentences like Ariel in The Little Mermaid. Really, try it!)

I’m not happy with how I look right now. It bothered me while I was on vacation (the whole “you can hide under bulky sweaters in the winter time” thing failed me and I thought about wearing a wetsuit instead of a bikini) and it horrified me when I caught my reflection in all 16 of the dressing rooms at the outlets the other day. I’m not currently comfortable in my own, significantly looser skin.

But I still can’t in good conscience write a post for you about “getting back on track” or “staying healthy around the holidays” because, frankly, I have no intentions of doing those things. And to try to convince you — or myself — otherwise would be bullshit.

I like the holiday season.

I like spending time with my friends and family. And with that comes big tables filled with all my favorite foods, many of them involving layers of cheese, loads of bread, piles of pasta or all the chocolate I’ve ever dreamed about.

I like food.

Fortunately, I also like to exercise.

But I’m not about to overdo it on either spectrum just because I’ve eaten a few servings of stuffing a few days (OK, months in my case) out of the entire year. I don’t have time for extra workouts right now, and I just can’t say no to the office treats. The lady magazines think I should do things like eat a handful of nuts before going to a party to “curb my appetite,” and I think that’s pointless. I want to eat the yummy party food!

And so I will.

Please enjoy the holidays this year. If for you that means cleansing your body so you can feel confident and strong, that’s great! If it means being extra indulgent and living in stretchy pants, that’s fine, too!

Just do what works for you, and remember: It’s just one time of year. It’s supposed to be fun!

Don’t think that because certain people are passing on the crab cakes in favor of the shrimp cocktail that you should do the same.

Have both.

Then have seconds.

Then meet me over by the fondue.

And maybe one of these days I’ll attempt to get into a pair of skinny jeans. Until then, you’ll find me in my cake-eating pants, licking frosting off my lips and eventually hitting the gym. The “balance” thing is a work not-so-much in progress.

Cheers to a happy, healthy-based-on-your-definition-of-the-word and guilt-free holiday season!

Comments (101)
Posted in Holidays and tagged -
 
My neighbors do not judge me, so I spend time with them.

With One Month To Go

Date: November 26, 2012 at 9:04 am- by Ali- Comment(s): 50

Hi gobblers! I hope you had a nice, stress-free, full-bellied Thanksgiving. On the long weekend front, there’s not much for me to report. Instead of cramming eleventy billion “must do now” tasks into the three days I was in New […]

 
I asked Tyler what he's thankful for. He's still thinking about it. Life's great questions...

Thankful Things Thursday: Thanksgiving Edition

Date: November 22, 2012 at 8:10 am- by Ali- Comment(s): 18

I’m currently sitting at my mom and dad’s house in New Hampshire, hanging out with all my favorite people and being entertained by my BFF Ty. As I sit here in my baggiest sweatpants, surrounded by great people and a […]

 
Brian learned to use the new "panoramic" feature on his phone. So we have lots of very long photos now. I'm not really sure what to do with them...

The Land Of The Laid Back

Date: November 20, 2012 at 8:41 am- by Ali- Comment(s): 42

For one full week, I was the most relaxed I’ve been in as long as I can remember. For seven entire days, I abstained from the internet. No email. No Facebook. No Twitter. Definitely no blog reading. In fact, for […]

 
Oh look, all my dreams just came true. NBD.

Thankful Things Thursday: Feel Good Friday Edition

Date: November 9, 2012 at 8:43 am- by Ali- Comment(s): 40

A day late. My bad. Can we still get grateful though? Because I’m feeling it now more than ever. Ever, I tell you! And a Thankful Things Thursday by any other name — Feel Good Friday, perhaps? — is just […]

 
Hug Shot #3. That's all for now. You get it. We hugged.

From 4:13 To 3:51: My Manchester City Marathon Recap

Date: November 6, 2012 at 8:42 am- by Ali- Comment(s): 165

I spent 11 months in 2011 working to gain automatic entry to the New York City Marathon. I ran the requisite nine races — seriously burning out in the process — and volunteered at that year’s NYCM Expo. Finally, after […]

 
Hey, brother. You're the best.

When Nothing Goes According To Plan

Date: November 5, 2012 at 8:36 am- by Ali- Comment(s): 126

One major lesson I’ve learned this year is that no matter how hard you try — no matter how many pretty little To-Do lists you make — life doesn’t always follow your plan. In fact, more often than not, live […]

 
Cow tipping.

Thankful Things Thursday: For Safety, Pride & Resilience

Date: November 1, 2012 at 9:32 am- by Ali- Comment(s): 70

Well today’s edition of Thankful Things Thursday should be pretty easy, huh? After all that’s happened this week, I’m feeling extraordinarily grateful, so please allow me to let it all out. I’m thankful for the safety of my friends and […]

 
To me, you are perfect.

The Morning After

Date: October 30, 2012 at 9:23 am- by Ali- Comment(s): 52

I have lived in New York City for almost six years. In that time, I have never felt unsafe or scared. I never felt unsafe walking home to my first apartment on East 102nd Street, naively listening to my headphones […]

 
So glad I got to see these pretty trees in the park before the wind takes them down.

My New York City Marathon Playlist

Date: October 29, 2012 at 9:41 am- by Ali- Comment(s): 24

Hey storm troopers! In true “the week before the New York  City Marathon” fashion (remember the freak Halloween Snowtober thing last year?), there’s a heck of a storm blazing through the area. Hurricane Sandy is here, and she’s crazy! But […]