Spring is the perfect time to embrace change and renew your vows for better health and weight management. Parks, trails and neighborhoods will soon become inviting venues for outdoor activity, and farmers markets with tempting local food options will be at your fingertips. Set yourself up for success by following these simple tips to help shed holiday weight and feel great.
Spring marks the resurgence of social events along with the pitfall of high calorie drinks and appetizers. When it comes to restaurant gatherings, portion control is key. Limit yourself to one drink per hour, and choose low calorie options like a light beer, wine or a cocktail made with soda water. Drink plenty of water in between to pace yourself. Share appetizers with friends and try to avoid foods that are fried, oily, or have lots of cheese. Bring a pack of strong mints or gum as a way to stop yourself from eating too much.
If you are at a café having a blended drink, order a small size and ask if the barista can make it ‘half sweet’ or unsweetened to reduce the calories. Don’t restrict yourself completely, simply monitor your portion size or save these foods as treats to help you achieve your health goals.
Have Fun with Fitness
In addition to being an essential part of weight management, exercise can also alleviate stress and improve mood. Scheduling fitness into your life like you would a meeting or appointment will help you stick to a routine. Put yourself in situations that hold you accountable, like exercising with a friend, joining a sports team, or working with a personal trainer to keep you on track.
Choosing an activity that you find fun will also set you up for success to following any exercise plan. Now is a great time to look for deals on outdoor boot camps and Zumba classes in your area.
Prep for Success
It is easy to fall off the weight loss wagon when your schedule gets busy. Making sure that healthy choices are easy to access at home is important to help you control your calories and avoid turning to takeout. For example, the fiber found in vegetables can help you feel full without increasing your calorie count, but the prep work can be a drag.
After grocery shopping, take the time upfront to chop veggies for salad toppings and keep them in the fridge for easy assembly. Choose a simple olive oil dressing with balsamic vinegar, adding nuts for protein and fruit like pears or strawberries for flavor. If you find yourself reaching into the freezer for dinner, hide healthy options there too!
Putting together a package of cut veggies and chicken makes for an easy stir fry, or freeze some home made turkey burgers that are ready to throw in the oven! You will thank yourself for investing the time to prep when in a pinch for time.
Contritor: Sarah Penney