It’s the time of year when most of us are trying hard to stay on track with our eating, you might have had a fantastic week so far, but are now faced with one of the toughest challenges – the weekend get-together.
Whether it be a BBQ at a friend’s place or Sunday lunch at Aunty Shirley’s house, you know that you are going to come face to face with a great looking cheese platter, the old family recipe potato bake, mouth watering desserts and probably the million dollar question, ‘Beer, red or white’?
As humans we have been using food as a means to get together for centuries, we sit, we eat, we talk and we laugh. The key though if you are trying to lose weight this summer is how to approach these gatherings in such a way that all your good work in the week so far doesn’t go to waste over the course of a Saturday night binge session!
Here are my top 5 ways to survive the weekend get-together and wake up the next day feeling great.
1) Take a dish that you want to eat but that everyone else will also enjoy
This could be a smoked salmon salad, devilled eggs, a beetroot dip with carrot and celery or maybe a healthy dessert?. The point is that you will have something there that you can focus on that you know will fill you up and you will enjoy (you can download lots of these type of recipes here http://kimbeach.com/free-resources/recipes/ ).
2) Eat before you go
This one is critical. Turning up at a BBQ hungry is like shopping in the afternoon when you haven’t had lunch, it’s a recipe for disaster. Make sure you eat five minutes before you leave your house or if it’s a long drive, take something with you to eat on the way (I am forever driving my husband mad by munching away in the car on the way somewhere). If you arrive hungry, then everything on the table is going to look fantastic.
3) Take a healthy treat with you
Bounce balls are my personal favourite but a protein bar is also a great option. ‘FOMO’ (fear of missing out) can be a powerful motivator and if everyone is sitting down enjoying homemade Tiramisu then it can be hard to sit there and smile. Don’t be afraid to produce a bounce ball from your bag and eat that instead. It will satisfy you and make sure that you keep your distance from the other sugar filled treats.
4) Be upfront with your host
Depending on how well you know them it could be as simple as sending them a text or mentioning it to them beforehand. Making positive changes to your body is nothing to be ashamed of and most people will totally respect your decision to lose weight and live a healthier lifestyle. Being upfront and telling them before you arrive will make your host aware of and avoid offering you something that you are trying to avoid – limiting temptations.
5) Take your own drinks
This is an obvious one but again it helps to play it safe. If your girlfriends are all white wine drinkers for example and they are used to sitting down for a chat and a catch up – then make sure you have something on hand so you can still participate but keep control of what you are drinking. Often I will take sparkling water with me to peoples places just to make sure I have something ready to drink that I enjoy.
Changing what you eat and transforming your body is not about excluding yourself from normal social situations, it’s about being prepared and remaining in control, especially if a change in lifestyle is new for you. At the end of the day it comes down to your mental strength and how much you want it, but I hope these 5 tips will help you along your journey this weekend.