BRING ON THE FALL……….
Last week Lori had some wonderful advice and tips for staying on plan during the weekends. As she explained, “the weekends are not “planned” as well as the weekdays are. Now with the beginning of fall, this can be more true than usual.
This time of the year brings lots of different activity for many of us. It is a time of sports activities for families of school age children. I can remember having to rush out on weekend mornings to get to the soccer fields or the football fields with my kids. Also, many school or civic groups have activities planned during the fall. School fairs and community or church festivals occur. I know here in Louisiana, there is some sort of festival somewhere close by each and every weekend. Last but not least are the familiar football outings. Whether it is your alma mater or your favorite NFL team, there are many types of get togethers that are traditional and fun. Along with these are amazing food temptations. Some of these can be great healthy things but like a lot of America today, that is not usually the case.
What’s a person to do? How can I get through the weekend activities on plan and not feel deprived?
Well, here are a few tips that may help you:
- GET SUPPORT! You are not in this alone. If you are a Take Shape For Life client, you have the support of your Health Coach. Give them a call and let them know what is coming up. Ask them for their support and assistance. Don’t forget to ask your family, loved ones, friends and neighbors for their support also. Let them know you are getting healthy and you would appreciate their help!
- GET FOCUSED! Work with your Health Coach and/or support buddy and get clear on what you want to achieve. Look at the “big” picture and get clear. Now, break that down to a medium frame picture and get clear on what needs to happen just through the weekend to keep you on your path. Then put the secondary action steps in place for this weekend to get yourself where you want to be.
- PLAN! Where are you going? What will be available for you to eat/drink? What can you bring to add to the festivities that will be a healthy choice for all concerned? Do you have enough Medifast products available for the day? Bring ready to drink/eat Medifast meals such as the puffs, pretzels, bars and bites. Don’t forget the ready-to-drink shakes also. Want to have a “festive” looking drink AND stay on plan – mix up a Medifast fruit punch or cranberry mango, serve in a cocktail glass with a twist of lemon or lime. Try Club Soda with a twist also. This is carbonated so it “looks” just like a cocktail!
- RESEARCH! Are you on maintenance and want to include healthy, fun snacks for the event? Do you know what those choices are? Remember, fruit and vegetables do have carbohydrates in them and while they are healthy in and of themselves, too much of anything can lead to trouble! Familiarize yourself with the glycemic index of common “snacks/tailgate” foods. Do you think “deviled eggs” are a healthy choice? How about fruit filled juices and cocktails? Do some work and prepare yourself with knowledge. “Dr A’s Habits of Health,” can help you prepare. Review Chapter 9 for Choosing Wisely and Chapter 10 for Putting It All Together. You can choose healthy fueling choices from these chapters.
- RECIPES! Now here’s the fun part. Find some new HEALTHY recipes to bring with you for any of these outdoor fall activities! The TSFL “Lean & Green Meal Cookbook” has some great recipes that could work for outdoor parties. If grilling will occur, prepare all your ingredients ahead of time and bring them ready to place on the grill. The salad recipes from this book can be prepared ahead of time and served chilled at your outdoor party – just bring a cooler with sufficient ice to keep it at a safe temperature. Kabobs are a good choice for outdoor events. Prepare yours at home with allowable protein and vegetable choices and bring them with you. I have made the Lemon Greek Salad and skipped the chicken. I added this to the table of side dishes and offered everyone something “different” for the meal.
- HYDRATE! Don’t forget your water bottle. Most of the time, the weather is cooler and we don’t focus on our hydration. Plus, what goes in must go out and sometimes, the “facilities” are not what we consider great. Plan on your hydration. Just because it’s not real hot out, doesn’t mean you need less water. Decide ahead of time how much water you need to ingest before you ever leave for the event. Know how much water you will need to ingest during the event. At least have 8-16 ounces of water while you are at the event. Remember also, sometimes thirst presents itself as hunger. Be prepared to drink water if the “hunger” bug hits you hard and you are thinking of going off plan. This wonderful liquid could be a “life saver” for your program!
- REFOCUS! No matter what happens at the event, when you do get home re-focus. Plan for this before you ever leave for the event. Get your journal out and write in it what you expect to have happen at this event. Example: “I plan to enjoy being outside with friends and family. I plan to eat healthy and drink plenty of water. I plan to get some extra exercise in by walking and visiting.” Leave that journal out where you will see it as soon as you get home. When you do return, write in the journal about your day. What went on? How did you do? How do you feel? Now, finish your day with a Medifast meal and get yourself ready for a successful tomorrow!