With Thanksgiving upon us, we here at Zach Moore Training would like to share a few insights we hope will keep you from freaking about the “ten pounds you are inevitably going to gain,” from your Thanksgiving dinner.

Are most of us going to over eat at Thanksgiving? You bet. Thanksgiving is kind of like a state sanctioned glutton fest.

What most of us don’t realize is though, is that that while we may eat and drink more than we would at a normal dinner, more likely than not, we won’t over eat as dramatically (calorically speaking) as we may think.

We may walk, or crawl for that matter, away from the dinner table feelingstuffed, and emotionally we may feel down because of the food choices we just made, but in the grand scheme of things Thanksgiving dinner isn’t going to do as much damage to our waistlines as we think. (And feel.)

(We keep emphasizing the word feel because the key here is that there is a difference between what you feel and what actually is.)

Now the following numbers are generalized and simplified, but we think they paint a relatively accurate picture of the extra calories many of us can expect to consume on Thanksgiving.

Lets say your typical non-Thanksgiving dinner runs you about 500-750 calories. It’s fair to assume your Thanksgiving dinner (not including desert or alcohol, which we’ll get t in a second,) will probably only run you about 500 calories more than normal. That’s not that bad.

Next, lets say you hit the dessert hard (because come on, who can only have one piece of pie!) and you consume about 1000 calories from your desserts of choice. Okay, that’s something but still in the grand scheme of things, it’s not terrible(If you did this everyday… that it would be terrible.)

And finally lets factor in alcohol. For the sake of argument lets say you have three glasses of wine at about 150 calories each. That’s 450 calories. Again, in the grand scheme of things, not that bad. (Again, if you did that every night though, that would add up fast.)

So between your larger than normal dinner portion, an extra 500 calories, your extra 1000 calories from desert and your extra 450 calories from booze, you’ve only consumed an extra 1950 calories.

Given it takes about 3500 calories to gain one pound of body fat, if your extra food and booze consumption looks something like what we just outlined, you’re not even going to gain a pound of fat from Thanksgiving dinner.

Now, if you do get on the scale the next day or two and see your up 2-4 pounds, a lot of that is going to be water weight and your body storing extra glycogen. (Carbohydrates are stored in your muscle and liver cells in the form of glycogen to be used as fuel for physical and mental activity.)

So only about ¼ of that weight is actually fat. The rest is going to come off in a few days as your body flushes out the water weight and burns through the extra glycogen.

So take a deep breath. It’s going to be okay!

But just, in case here is a good tip to help you mitigate the damage and help manage the mental and emotional side of the Thanksgiving binge.

The day after Thanksgiving, skip breakfast. That should save you at least a few hundred calories.

Then, have a small but highly nutritious lunch. Something like a spinach and kale salad with a variety of non starchy vegetables and some grilled chicken or salmon.

Repeat that meal for dinner and all of a sudden you’ve executed an excellent low calorie day and helped to balance out the feast from the night before.

Have a great Thanksgiving everyone and try to enjoy yourselves!

Just remember, no talking politics or religion. You are playing with serious fire if you do!

Your exercise and dietary coaching team.

Zach Moore Training.

And everyone, if you found today’s article insightful, inspiring or enlightening and you have a friend, family member, colleague or peer who you think would benefit from what we’ve talked about here today, pass on this email please.

One of the best things you can do for those you care about is helping them to build a healthy and great looking body.  A body that is strong, capable and moves without pain and a body in which they feel confident and happy.