This past week, this writer (somewhat) celebrated her 22nd birthday. One year closer to finding our own insurance, woo-hoo!
Regardless of whether you enjoy or despise your birthday, it is commonly a time of way too many treats and sweets, alcohol (if you’re of age), and little care for anything else. While this is all well and good, more often than not as you age, all of the excessive sweets, alcohol and lack of exercise start to wear more and more on your body. So why not continue that healthy streak through the celebration? You can have your cake and eat it too!
Below are some helpful tips to make sure that you enjoy your birthday to the best of your abilities, all while making sure you haven’t transformed into Yoda for the following day. Gotta celebrate living rather than slug along!
Don’t eat all the sweets, but don’t feel like you can’t eat any of the sweets: Let’s face it, birthdays are meant to be enjoyed, and that enjoyment is usually catapulted by the birthday cakes, the birthday pies, the birthday cupcakes…the list goes on. While all of these treats are divine, is it really worth it to eat so much sugar that you’re not getting complete pleasure from? Why not just choose one heavenly item rather than waste all of that sugar intake on measly candy bars and bland cupcakes? Go big or go home, as they say; pick one item to splurge on (some examples are listed here, as courtesy of BuzzFeed, and some other ideas are listed here, courtesy of Pinterest), and share the other treats with your family, friends and co-workers. Share the love (aka the sugar)!
Get your workout in: Just because it’s your birthday doesn’t mean you can sit around watching “Friends” all day and coloring, like you used to do when you were younger. Unfortunately, having a birthday as an adult doesn’t discount your responsibilities—taking care of the kids, going to work, getting a good night’s rest. One of the best ways to kick off a new year of the new you is to get a workout in, so why not? Hit up the gym in preparation for hitting that new year with a new rocking attitude, and take on a new class while you’re at it. Who knows, perhaps in your area, you’ll get a discount on speciality classes on your birthday—it’s worth a shot!
Limit your alcohol intake: Sure, we all like to have an adult grape juice now and then, but remember how hangovers get worse as you get older? Yeah, it’s probably not the time then to get all your free birthday drinks in one go. Instead, limit yourself to only one or two drinks today (especially if you have work the next day) and make sure to be cognizant of the sugar in these drinks. At a local bar in Seattle, it was popular to drink “Unicorn Jizz” for one’s birthday—which was basically a 16 oz. glass of sugary vodka and triple sec. Did this writer try the $10 drink for her birthday? Yes. Was it worth it? Not at all. Take that warning with a grain of salt and stick with the simple stuff—a nice glass of Chianti will do.
Make the food for your b-day celebration yourself: It’s always sweet of your friends to make a ton of food for your birthday, or choose to order a whooping meat-topped pizza pie for the party, but sometimes this food can have unfortunate after-effects. Remember, heartburn is real regardless of whatever you’re celebrating. Look at some of the following links— here, here, here, here, and here—for ideas on simple, healthy treats you can make for your friends and yourself to celebrate a year of the new you.
Find healthy recipes for sweets that everyone will still enjoy: Just because it’s time for sweets doesn’t mean you can’t still be healthy. Healthy sweets can still be fun—they aren’t all prunes and sadness, they can sometimes be tasty! Plus, whatever healthy sweets you choose to make, your friends should be wise enough to pretend to love (before they go buy a mile-high pie down the street for themselves). Check out these links for some ideas on what to make for your loved ones on your special day if you choose to do so—from BuzzFeed, another from BuzzFeed, some from Cooking Light, and a few from the Food Network. Even if you’re not in the mood to make a dessert for your own birthday, you can always steer your friends in the right direction to these links, and be all set for some healthy deliciousness!
Enjoy your birthday everyone—it only comes once a year, after all!