It’s the weekend again! Your plans probably involve going out somewhere with family or friends. While you’re out on the town, you’re most likely going to end up consuming more calories than your body really needs and, therefore, gaining some weight.
According to studies of what people eat on the weekends as compared to what they eat during the week, many people eat up to 400 more calories than usual during weekends. Over a whole year, those extra calories add up to 6 pounds of weight gain!
Don’t let “weekend weight gain” happen to you. Follow these four tips to stay a step ahead of it.
1. Plan Ahead
Instead of abandoning your healthy eating regimen as soon as Friday night rolls around, allow yourself only one meal over the weekend when you can cheat. Think about where you’ll go and what you’ll eat during the weekend, and choose the one place or event where you’ll let yourself indulge.
For instance, you can decide to have a few cocktails on Friday night or a calorie-filled brunch on Sunday, but you can’t do both.
2. Resist The Temptation To Sleep In
If you stay in bed until noon on a Saturday or Sunday, your circadian rhythm will be thrown off completely. You’ll feel like you’re starving when you finally do get up, so you’ll probably eat a lot more than usual for lunch and throughout the rest of the day.
Of course, you should still do your best to get those 8 hours of sleep in – just go to bed early enough that you’re not getting up any later than 10:00 A.M.
3. Work Out With A Friend On Saturday Mornings
Why is it so important to work out with a friend? Simple – Because if you make arrangements with your friend to get together to work out, you’re much less likely to skip your workout.
Okay, so why should it be on Saturday morning? The answer to this is also simple – Because if you know you have to get up on Saturday morning and work out, you won’t stay out drinking alcohol (which also contributes to weight gain) until the wee hours of the morning on Friday night. A Saturday-morning workout also helps you set a health-conscious tone for your weekend, which may keep you from making unhealthy food choices later on.
4. Spend Part Of Your Weekend Doing Something Active
As an alternative to the Saturday-morning workout, you may prefer to plan an activity during your weekend that burns calories.
You may want to hike or run on a nearby trail, hit a bike path, or take an afternoon or a whole day to explore an unfamiliar neighborhood on foot. When you go out on these adventures, remember to pack a lunch made up of the healthy foods you stick to during the week.
One final note: Did you still consume more calories than you should have over the weekend, despite your best efforts to avoid it? If so, you can make up for it by consuming fewer calories for the next day or two. Try replacing one or two meals with a protein shake.