Food-Free Celebration Ideas

Everyone loves a reason to celebrate: birthdays, promotions, milestone successes. These ideas prove you don't need cake and champagne to do it.
Celebrate Without Gaining Weight

You know the feeling. You've hopped on the scale and — wow — the number is significantly lower that you expected. Or you catch sight of yourself in a shop window and barely recognize yourself, you look so good.

Or maybe you've won a prize, been promoted, won a contest, beaten the opposition or gotten lucky in love. Good news of any kind is always a reason to celebrate.

For most of us, happy celebrations lead to food and drink. But rewarding yourself this way can be counterproductive over the long haul, especially when you're trying to get — and keep — your weight down. Looking for ways to celebrate your achievements that don't involve thousands of calories? Try the following ideas.

  • Get a facial. Whether you do it yourself at home or go to a salon, it's a great way to feel pampered and special. The smell of those special cleansers, toners, and lotions, plus that dewy, toned skin afterward, can really lighten your mood.

  • Pose for a photo shoot. Go for glamour with a photo at one of those studios that makes you look like a movie star or a top model. Or have an "olden days" photo taken, one you can pass on to your grandchildren someday.

  • Take in a show. Or visit that museum or art gallery you've been dying to get to.

  • Get your hair done. A new 'do is a huge morale booster and a great reward. Try a new color or get a blowout or casual updo.

  • Give yourself flowers. Have them delivered or pick up a bunch at your favorite florist or farmer's market and put them in vases throughout your home.

  • Buy yourself a new outfit. If you're in the process of losing weight, buy it in your goal size as a major incentive to go the final distance. Or please yourself today with one that fits and flatters now.

  • Take the day off.Clear your calendar and seize a whole day just for you. No plans, just play it by ear.

  • Splurge on perfume. Don't always wait for overseas trips to get things duty-free — buy an expensive perfume and splash it around.

  • Take a bubble bath. Then float for half an hour or longer. Grab a book or some magazines, light some candles, and keep topping up the hot water.

Once you start thinking of special ways to treat yourself, dozens more will come to mind. Soon, rather than routinely slipping into a bakery the minute you feel a yen to treat yourself coming on, you'll think again. You'll find yourself automatically popping open a bottle of bubble bath rather than the bubbly, passing the chocolate store on the way to the florist, and dialing the theater for tickets to a show rather than ordering in pizza.

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