3 Things You Can Do To Help Prevent Weekend Weight Gain
Do you find that you eat really well all week long, and then get completely off track from Friday through Sunday? If so, you’re not alone. Weight gain from Friday through Sunday is a real thing. A recent study from Cornell University found that most of us gain weight on Saturday and Sunday, thanks to weekend socializing and indulgences.
Weight fluctuations are normal, a pound or two up or down, here or there, is absolutely normal. But for many, the shock and horror of what the scale says on Monday morning is likely due to what was eaten since Friday. But, it doesn’t have to be this way.
If you want to achieve and maintain a healthy weight, getting a handle on your weekend eating habits is essential.
Here are a few tips to help you put a healthy spin on the weekends while still enjoying yourself.
Weight Gainer: eating to unwind. It’s been a long intense week, and you feel that you deserve to eat extra (fatty, sugary) food as way to decompress. You use food to reward yourself for putting up with your killer commute, incompetent co-workers, demanding boss, or whatever stressful scenario you encountered during the week.
The Fix: Relaxation is paramount to good health, but using weekend diet indulgences as a way to de-stress can be more stressful in the long run. Overeating can feel good while you are doing it, but the high only lasts for a short time. Instead, think about ways to indulge yourself that are not food related.
For example, treat yourself to a massage or spa treatment; meet a special friend for a walk and talk; or listen to one of these “relax and listen podcasts“. Instead of overeating as a way to decompress after a long work week, focus on healthier options that will support your goals of losing weight and improving your health and wellbeing.
Weight Gainer: alcohol. The extra glass of wine at dinner or cocktail at a party can pack a calorie punch. A 12-ounce beer is 150 calories, light beer is about 100, a shot of a distilled spirit has 80 calories and 4 ounces of wine has around 100 calories.
The Fix: allow yourself no more than two drinks on each weekend night, and be conscious that alcohol can stimulate your appetite and decrease your inhibitions about eating more than you otherwise might. When you drink, go for light beers and distilled spirits with seltzer or diet soda. And be sure to drink plenty of water to stay well hydrated.
Weight Gainer: lack of daily structure. While kicking back and doing nothing is the ultimate weekend plan, having nothing to do or no place to go can lead to overeating. Many people need some type of schedule so they don’t deviate too far from their normal eating routine. Not having a plan can lead to skipping meals, snacking all day long, and overeating in the end.
The Fix: stick to your weekday meal and snack routine as much as possible. When you’re at home, don’t hang out in the kitchen unless you are cooking or eating a planned meal. If you don’t already journal, doing so on the weekends can keep you honest and mindful of what and why you’re eating.