Hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday! Started this blog sitting in a quiet, relaxing room at my in laws house on Black Friday under a nice warm blanket. Most people do enjoy going out at the crack of dawn (or even the night before) taking advantage of those "doorbuster" sales and sometimes it can be fun if you are feeling adventurous but maybe after all of those years working in retail the thought of dealing with those crazy crowds to me just sounds exhausting. These days I prefer a quiet day off in a blanket when I get the time to do so.
I know it's commonplace around this holiday to reflect about what you are most thankful for and in the past I would do the same a little bit. But I think this year in particular it really did hit home with me a little more than normal.
The night before Thanksgiving it started when I was reading posts on social media about all of the people going out to bars ripping it up. Being in bands and playing music the majority of my life I know that the night before turkey day is THE night to play gigs because the bars are always packed with what I like to call the "amateur hour" drinkers. Kind of like St Patricks Day or when you would go to church on the big holidays when you see the family or adults mumbling prayers and not knowing when to sit, stand or kneel. It's a fun night out and very good night for a band to play but there are a lot of people out there getting torn up for their "one big night out" and it can get kinda messy.
I'll be honest, there was a part of me where I was thinking "man, it would be nice to get out there and knock a few back tonight" or "it would have been cool if the band had a gig tonight" since things have been picking up musically for me and the gang. But then looking around my house seeing the girls all excited to go to "Nana and Grampy's" house and being all chill on the couch like I am now those feelings went away and I said to myself "Nahhhhh I'm good right where I am"
Another big feeling of being thankful and noticing a big difference this year was the actual day of the turkey itself. "Old Greg" after waking up from a hard night of pre turkey partying would of woken up and proceed to gorge myself with as much food as possible in order to switch from hangover sick to food sick. They do say there's nothing better to get rid of that pukey feeling with some grease 🤕
but what did I do yesterday morning?
I got up "sorta" early, went downstairs and proceeded to do a nice, long 40 minute DDP yoga routine. Kind of a nice calorie burn before the afternoon of eating 👍
Now did I partake? Hells yea I did! We had a wonderful meal of turkey, potatoes (sweet and regular mashed), stuffing, cranberry and all of the great things you eat on Thanksgiving and it was a fabulous meal! But as we chit chated around the table and kind of went through what we were thankful for I thought to myself "holy shit, right around this time last year I was definitely over the 300 pound mark!" Although it was a big day of eating for me, it wasn't that crazy and it definitely wasn't like it used to be.
Like I said, there are a lot of things this year that I am very thankful for.
I'm thankful that all of my family and friends this year are doing well, still around and still very involved in my life.
I'm thankful that this year I am finally out there doing music again with a great group of friends and musicians doing material from my first ever solo album.
But this year the thing I am most thankful for is that I've been able to HEAL.
By the end of this year and going into the new one there is still a lot I want to do. I know that I want to lose this "final 40" I have hanging on me and I know I can do it.
The yoga and better eating have been great this year, but I think if I want to really take it to the next level I need to start doing more cardio too. This new lifestyle has done wonders for my stage performance, but when singing a full set I've noticed I can get winded, so some treadmill or elyptical work mixed with yoga should do the trick. I'd love to do something like a 5k or more running and not feel like I'm jiggling all over the place.
Speaking of being winded, I'd love to be able to finally quit smoking too. Although honestly I still do love it, I did enjoy when I tried vaping for a few weeks. I think getting the right brand and sticking to it this time can really help me finally quit the habit once and for all.
I know that there have still been some struggles this year and moments of doubt and stress, but looking back the good has certainly outweighed the bad and I'm extremely lucky.
I remember many times sitting in some crummy office in a retail store eating White Castle working to make a little extra money on thanksgiving or sitting in some run down apartment pounding beers while eating a Boston Market turkey dinner thinking to myself "when is it my turn?"
Cut to 20 years later I'm healthier, happier and having a lovely meal surrounded by my family, wife of over 11 years and my two beautiful daughters. I never thought it would ever happen for me and for that I am forever thankful .