How to Stay on Track This Easter Weekend
Have you ever eaten so much over the holidays that you were left with a sore stomach and regrets?
Ya, I've been there, done that & it's not fun...
The holidays come around every year and yet many of us struggle with them. This is because we shelve our discipline so that we can "get the most" out of it. It's a common belief to think that in order to fully enjoy ourselves, we need to put our health on the back burner and forgot about it until the weekend is over. But this leads to those sore stomachs and regrets... which is the last thing you want right?!
I don't want you to have to go another holiday thinking that you have to drop all the good habits you have worked so hard to build just so you can enjoy yourself! That's why I have created this post - to share with you 5 practical strategies that will help you enjoy your Easter weekend and keep your health top of mind.
Strategy #1: Practice mindful eating
First things first, rather than controlling every bit of food, go into the holidays with an open and compassionate mindset. Allow yourself to enjoy some foods you only have during the holidays but don’t feel the need to overeat. If you didn't know this, now you do: You do not need to eat everything that is in front of you (this is coming from someone that once thought I had to finish everything on my plate, newsflash, you don't!).
To help you build a better relationship with your food, practice mindful eating habits! Below are some tips to help you get started.
Tips for Mindful Eating:
Eating slowly and without distraction; turn the tv off and put your phone away.
Listening to physical hunger cues and eating only until you’re satisfied/full.
Engaging your senses by noticing colors, smells, sounds, textures, and flavors
Appreciate your food; eat with enjoyment and pleasure.
Chew thoroughly - your digestion begins in your mouth - to make it easier on your body to chew your food before it hits your stomach for further digestion
Eat sitting down and in a calm environment.
Strategy #2: Avoid the snacks that add no value & enjoy the REAL food!
It’s not the ham or the turkey or homemade dishes that lead us to gain weight over the holidays it’s more often the empty-calorie snacks that we can’t stop eating before and after dinner! These snacks like chips, pretzels, and store-bought chocolate. These foods are nothing special and you can get them any time of the year (I promise you can find a bunny or egg-shaped chocolate no matter the time of year). These foods are extremely palatable and designed to make you want more…
The best way to avoid overeating these foods is to take strategy #1 and work on your relationship with food. But also just remind yourself that you can get these foods any time you want! It's also important to ask yourself, "are these foods serving me now and will they serve me later?".
*Pro Tip* Avoid standing directly by the snacks while waiting for dinner. Go find a game to play, have a conversation with someone or grab a warm tea!
Strategy# 3: Go for a walk after eating
We may be traveling and not moving as much as we normally would so that’s why I highly suggest going for a walk after eating. This not only helps you get some movement in but it will also help you digest your food! Walking can support your body’s digestive processes to help break down the food you just ate into absorbable nutrients. Walking within 60-90 minutes after eating can also be useful in minimizing blood sugar spikes. The walk can help promote feel-good hormones like dopamine and clear your mind. Grab your family members and go for a stroll around the block to get some fresh spring air. You will come back feeling refreshed and ready to take on some games!
Strategy# 4: Rather than seeing the extra calorie intake as punishment… use it to fuel your exercises and strength.
After enjoying food and time with others don’t forget to move your body! You might not be going to the gym or jumping on your Peloton but every little movement counts. Going for a family walk, skating or playing games that have everyone moving can be an opportunity to keep your blood flowing and put those extra calories to use! Consider some of the extra calories as fuel for your workout once you're back to your exercise routine.
Strategy# 5: Prioritize sleep and hydration
Don’t forget to get some rest because let’s be real - the holidays, entertaining, etc. can get tiresome so do yourself a favor and take the time to get some quality R&R and do NOTHING. A lot of the treats and drinks we indulge in over the holidays can leave us dehydrated, feeling puffy and a little bloated so make sure to drink plenty of water too.
There you have it! Five strategies to help you get the most out of your Easter weekend!
If you are looking for personalized support with your health and want to know what it would be like to have a health coach supporting you on your journey, reach out to me! I would love to hear from you.