When I was six, I was a flower girl in my aunt and uncle’s wedding. At the reception, I kind of stole the show with my air guitar moves, and the crowd loved it. So as a natural born performer, I took it up a notch and slid around on the ground until I broke a sweat, had to go chug a sprite, and get back out there. My fans were waiting for me, and I’ve always believed that you should give the people what they want. Thus, my love of weddings was born.
This past weekend I went to my neighbor’s wedding (yay, congrats!) and naturally had a blast. But because weddings tend to be the perfect environment for over-indulging, I woke up the next morning feeling a little puffy to say the least. It was the first time in a long time that I didn’t eat a single fruit or vegetable the whole day, and I have #noregrets. Six-year old Mackenzie and now twenty-year old Mackenzie have that in common.
Eighteen-year old Mackenzie would have felt very differently. She would have spent the whole next day trying to “get back on track” by working out, eating carrots, and just feeling guilty. In a world that is so absorbed in Diet Culture, it’s so easy to experience remorse after eating something we deem “unhealthy”. There’s nothing wrong with wanting to get back to a healthy and balanced routine, but beating yourself up because you were “bad” isn’t going to do anything but bum you out.
It’s definitely possible to return to a healthy routine without self-deprecation, but it all starts with mindset. For me personally, I like to remember the fun I had. That day of memories with people I love is so much more important than stressing about the fact that I ate a cupcake and three peanut butter cups. Was I feeling pretty bloated afterwards? Yes. Did I absolutely kill it when I sang “Devil Went Down to Georgia” with one of my best friends? Also yes, and it was freakin’ fun.
Since I do recognize the value of eating a well-balanced diet, there are definitely some techniques that I find helpful after a weekend of treating myself. First, starting with a healthy breakfast is the best way to make sure that my day is headed in the right direction. My personal favorite is a fried egg sandwich with tomato, spinach, and cheese. Lots of veggies, protein, and fiber is a great recipe for staying full until the next meal.
Second, drinking lots of water is SO important. I’ve found that the bigger the water bottle I carry, the more water I drink throughout the day. Aim for 8 glasses, especially if your weekend of indulging included alcohol. Staying hydrated is so important to keep digestion and your body working well.
Don’t shy away from snacks. You might think that eating less will help “fix” your body after overeating, but that’s definitely not the case. Eating a snack that’s high in fiber (like a cup of fruit) will help keep you full and will help keep digestion on track. It can also prevent you from eating giant meals later to the point where you feel stuffed afterwards.
Lastly, please don’t do a cleanse or detox. I’m literally begging you. That green juice is not fixing your problems. You’re only going to end up hangry, tired, and with a massive headache, because your body is actually being starved. Your kidneys are your body’s personal cleansing system, because they filter the fluids that are in your body. Consider this a blessing, because your body is doing the work for you!
Life is short, weddings are fun, and carrying guilt for eating a certain way is not worth it. No extreme measures are required after a weekend of overeating, but you have the power to make healthy choices after the celebration is over. Now go kill it on the air guitar. Your fans are waiting.