Friday, August 31, 2012

Motivated Mondays

Ok, it's not quite Monday yet but with Monday being a holiday for most of us and the temptations of a long weekend looming ahead, I felt like it might be a good idea to get motivated before Monday so there aren't regrets after the long weekend.

Labor Day is usually filled with bbqs, beaches and pools and lots of time with family and friends.  Along with those fun things usually comes richer foods, more alcohol and less activity.  So how can we socialize and enjoy time with friends and family without derailing all our hard work? 

Here are a couple tips that I plan on using this weekend:

1) Workout - do this first thing in the morning because let's be honest, you're not going to the gym or for a run after being at the beach or a bbq all day.  A few drinks in and you won't be thinking about burning some calories.  So get up early, get a good workout in, burn some calories and you can enjoy the day without thinking about the missed workout.

2) Choose your indulgences - if you drink, eat only clean foods, if you indulge in food, don't drink.  You just can't do both without it being a detriment to your weight loss. Pick where you want to use a few extra calories and enjoy reasonable portions (and remember that workout you already did, that gave you a little wiggle room!)

3) Stay active - if you're at the pool, don't just lounge, swim a few laps, or throw the ball around or tread some water.  If you're at a picnic, walk around, throw the Frisbee, or have impromptu races with friends.  Whatever you're doing, don't just sit around.  At least stand up since standing burns more calories then sitting!

4) Get some rest - sometimes when we know we have an extra day off we stay up later and end up really throwing off our sleeping pattern.  Aside from the fact that erratic sleep patterns are bad for your health because they compromise the quality of sleep you get, they increase weight gain and they increase the risk of certain diseases, erratic sleep patterns actually leave you more tired over time which results in less energy for exercise and increased cravings for unhealthy foods, particularly simple carbohydrates.

Long weekends don't have to derail all your healthy hard work, they just need to be planned for.  And if you remember how good you'll feel Monday morning (and Tuesday too!), it makes it much easier to choose healthier foods, and lighter drinks all weekends.  And did I mention, get that exercise in??

What are you doing to stay healthy this Labor Day?

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