This doesn't mean you take a break from healthy habits. But most of us feel the weekend is a free pass from fitness. This kind of thinking can actually derail your fitness goals.
What We ThinkThe weekend actually allows you more time to work on your fitness program, but many of us don't look at it that way.
The weekend typically includes three days (counting Friday night) of social drinking, parties, and indulgence in unhealthy foods. Many of us completely abandon our fitness goals.
We somehow think what is done on the weekend doesn't impact our efforts and healthy lifestyle. This is far from the truth. Every choice made affects our fitness in a positive or negative way. Weekends seem to lean more toward the negative.
Stay on TrackI admit to letting my hair down a bit on the weekend. However, I don't agree with living an unhealthy lifestyle for three days. How could I exemplify what living healthy means to my clients, you, myself and family? Actions speak louder than words and living the life is what maintains my fitness goals.
Don't get me wrong, I'm all for having a cheat meal or even day. If not done correctly and in moderation is when fitness goals can fail. Moderation is knowing how to moderate. A treat day doesn't need to turn into a cheat weekend nor should it. Those partaking in this yo-yo behavior often feel guilty for eating off track all weekend and mad at themselves for gaining a few pounds.
Realistic ThinkingEnjoying a few indulgences in life is realistic, balanced and considered healthy. When done right, a cheat meal actually helps your body burn fat more effectively and maintain hard earned muscle. Living a healthy lifestyle includes knowing how to moderate cheat meals, not feel guilty, and getting back on track after the indulgence.
Studies show throwing in an occasional splurge meal benefits the body similar to how muscle confusion works performing a different exercise program. Long-term caloric restriction can deplete your body of essential nutrients and muscle glycogen. Supplying your body with additional energy from treat calories is shown to boost metabolism, hydrate muscles, and create a better physical working environment.
So, enjoying a cheat meal or day can benefit both physiologically and psychologically.
ModerationRegardless of where you are in your fitness program, learning how to moderate splurges is an essential part of being healthy. Without moderation, fitness goals can be negatively affected. How you think about food intake and what you eat will be the primary reason you're fit or fat.
Eating healthy should be a lifestyle and not looked upon as a punishment or burden. If eating healthy is not enjoyed, this can drive you to those unhealthy rebel weekends of mindless eating.
Mindful WeekendsThe weekend isn't a free pass to make unhealthy choices. If you're truly eating right and performing regular exercise, you would feel strange not to continue over the weekend. Our fitness brain should always be on directing us to choose nutritious food, not empty calories.
If you're struggling with eating right and getting off track over the weekend, it could mean taking a look at how you're preparing food. Does your healthy food taste good?
Healthy foods not only taste good but are great for you. Enjoy the texture and flavor of vegetables, fruits, and raw nuts. Indulge in lean proteins on the grill like salmon and chicken breast. Learn how to cook with herbs, spices, and marinades. Eating right doesn't mean eating bland.
Eating right along with the occasional splurge meal is what will enable you to reach and maintain those fitness goals.
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|Be well and Stay Healthy|