Relaxing on the weekend can throw off your dieting efforts, but it doesn’t have to be that way. Planning ahead and watching your portions can help you lose more weight.
Weight loss depends on the amount of food you take in, versus the energy you put out. It is necessary to scale back on your daily calories and exercise more to lose weight. Some people seem to master this on weekdays when they are on a strict schedule, but it all goes out the window once the weekend arrives.
A study by the National Institute of Health showed that dieters consistently stopped losing weight on the weekends due to an increase in calories from parties and social events.
While some diets allow a day off each week when you can eat whatever you want, it is still important to watch your total caloric intake on the weekends and make sure you move more. If you plan on attending a party this weekend, for example, have a plan in place before you go.
Start by balancing the extra calories with extra exercise. A morning bike ride or a long hike might not cancel out a brownie sundae, but it can help you burn more fat than you would by doing nothing. The other thing is that you can’t wait until the party to eat and walk in starving. Eat a sensible breakfast, a light lunch with protein to keep you feeling full longer and even have a healthy snack before you go.
Keep your weight loss goals in mind when you attend weekend parties and social events. Remember all of the hard work you put in over the past week and know that making a few poor food choices on the weekend can sabotage your entire week’s dieting efforts.
Choose your foods carefully. Load up on fruits, vegetables and lean meats whenever possible. Be careful with sauces, dressings and desserts as they can be heavy in calories and fat.
Train yourself to see parties as a way of socializing and having fun. A party does not have to be about the food. Furthermore, don’t give yourself permission to overeat every weekend. An occasional splurge is fine, but if you find yourself eating more than usual every weekend you are risking weight gain.
Restaurants are also trouble for dieters. It’s hard to control your weekend eating if you eat out for every meal. The more you eat at home, the more control you have over what you put in your body. Skip the breadbasket, start with soup or salad and carefully watch your portion sizes at restaurants.
Ways to Control Weekend Eating
- Plan ahead.
- Watch portion sizes.
- Minimize the number of meals you eat at restaurants.
- Beware of buffet style restaurants.
- Concentrate on people and conversation over food.
- Offset weekend eating with extra exercise.
- Track your daily calories on the weekends.
- Change your lifestyle to incorporate healthy food choices on the weekend.
- If you must eat dessert, share with a few people and only take a couple of bites.