The dumb mistake dieters can make before Thanksgiving and 5 simple steps to avoid it!

Diet, lifestyle change, whatever you want to call it, I’m talking about people who are working hard to weigh less by whatever means and the dumbest mistake they can make before Thanksgiving.

The dumbest mistake is not training for the big event.

Athletes do not go into a competition without training. Actors don’t perform without rehearsing, which is their way of training. The same holds true for musicians and singers. Whenever there is a competition or a performance, there is a lot of training, practicing and rehearsing that must happen first if one is to expect peak performance.

He didn't get these without a lot of training!

He didn’t get these without a lot of training!


The dumb mistake that people who want to lose weight is failing to train. In fact, many, rather than train they think they can just avoid the whole event. Yes! Big, dumb mistake. There is no hiding. Thanksgiving is coming and it’s going to get us all – one way or another.

The reasons why it’s a mistake are many. The more you like the food served on Thanksgiving day, the more you can’t expect success without training. If you are a stress or an emotional eater and Thanksgiving causes stress of high emotions, the more you need to train to handle it.



Failing to train is a dumb move, but some people do something even dumber – they don’t just fail to train, they allow their “weight control muscles” to atrophy. It’s a common (stupid) strategy to fast or eat very lightly going into any situation involving a lot of food. The rationale is eating fewer calories now will give me a chance to overeat and thus balance the calories.

If that’s your plan, you better plan for it to backfire. It’s hard enough to maintain a degree of control when facing holiday food and emotions under the best of conditions. Trying to manage the challenges after a long period of restricting food choices and excessively reduced calories is much more difficult. Regaining control afterwards is often even harder.


How to Prepare for Holiday Season

  1. Enjoy good food that’s good for you. Build your meals and snacks on lean protein, whole grains, fruit and vegetables.
  2. Give yourself small, well-planned, carefully spaced treats. Treats are important to avoid deprivation. It’s also important to enjoy treats to build confidence. Knowing you can have a treat without it blowing up into an episode of guilt that triggers a lapse is important.
  3. Get adequate quality sleep. Being rested improves your confidence level and supports healthier thoughts and actions. It also helps to regulate the hunger and satiety hormones.
  4. Get moving. Walk a lot, run sometimes, carry heavy things (be careful to lift them correctly to avoid hurting yourself) and sit less. Fitness makes you feel strong mentally and physically and the strength helps you to stay focused on goals while negotiating the challenges of the holiday.
  5. Mentally rehearse. Create a plan for Thanksgiving weekend and rehearse it mentally to help you nail the performance!

Don’t be DUMB, be PREPARED!

Jackie Conn

About Jackie Conn

Jackie Conn is married and has four grown daughters and four grandchildren. She is a Weight Watchers success story. She's a weight loss expert with 25 years of experience guiding women and men to their weight-related goals. Her articles on weight management have been published in health, family and women's magazines. She has been a regular guest on Channel 5 WABI news, FOX network morning program Good Day Maine and 207 on WCSH.