Are you one of those people that eat clean and workout hard during week, and then completely let go on the weekends? Maybe you find it a release to not care about what you’re eating; or maybe you don’t intend to over-indulge, but once that savory ‘don’t touch treat’ enters your mouth, you can’t stop. Whatever the reason may be, I hear ‘I ate this/drank that’ almost every Monday, and following that comes your guilt of doing so. You don’t need to press the restart button every Monday, and you don’t want to if you intend on getting stronger, leaner, and healthier every day.
I too, used to be a weekend indulgence warrior, and although I felt like I had the right to do so from eating (too) clean, and working out (too) hard during the week, it always came back to bite me in the butt….and make it 20 pounds heavier. Here’s what I learned during this time:
- Eating like a bird, consuming little amounts of carbs and training like an athlete not only drove me nuts during the week, it gave me the ‘go-ahead’ to eat whatever I wanted all weekend. This was a bad idea, and I would like to rip up the meat head magazine that made me think this was a good one. I would finish my weekend feeling bloated, tired and disgusted, and then I’d have to start the process all over again on Monday. It was awful.
- Starting my morning with a calorie loaded, fat storing breakfast, and then following that with a trip to starbucks for a mocha-peppermint-foamed-soy-whatever latte, then wrapping it up with some restaurant app’s, drinks and entree was not only over-excessive…it was loaded with enough calories to make me gain 1 pound – 3500 calories to be exact. Add on the Friday ‘girls night out drinks’, and my Sunday ‘let’s be lazy and sit in front of the TV and mindlessly eat’ regime, it threw another easy 3500 calories into my body. Bam – 2 lbs total for a weekend. Wait to go girlfriend.
- Even though I knew I had plans over the weekends to do things, I never planned for food success during this. I would eat little during the day knowing that I am going out for dinner and drinks that night, or simply be too busy to make the effort to eat. This is like the ticket to blubber hell because my body would be starving, my blood sugar would be low, and I would be ready to take down any 300lb man in pie eating contest. The perfect recipe for storing fat! Combine this with the first two downfalls, and a year in, I was 15 pounds heavier.
My problem was that I was doing everything to excess, without a plan. I was working out too hard, eating too little, and then hitting it my metabolism with a bat on the weekends with food and drinks -thinking that my week of hard workouts and clean eating would balance this out. Not so much. I needed to step back and see why my body wasn’t changing for the better; it was changing for the worse. Here’s how I corrected it:
- I started to eat more balanced meals throughout the week. No ‘diet’ type foods or eating regime. I now eat for energy, health, and strength, and this leaves my body feeling satisfied and happy. I feel like having a small treat during the week – I do so! My workouts are harder, but I spend 3-4 days hitting it hard, compared to my 6-7 day per week workout routine at the time. Balancing my eating and workouts like this, have not only made me happier, it has allowed me to enter the weekend with the same state of mind….eat balanced meals, workout hard, and treat yourself here and there. Not “Go big, or go home”.
- Enjoying my weekend includes more than completely letting go and eating whatever I want because “I deserve it”. I’ve found other ways to enjoy myself, and although I still love a night out with some beer drinking and steak eating, it stops there and I focus on other things that allow me to “let go” over the weekend. Find the same for yourself, and if you’re eating too much because you’re on the run all weekend long, carve some needed “me time” out to allow your body to relax.
- Planning is my secret to success, and it allows me to still go out with my friends, family and boyfriend without it being a downward spiral of weight loss failure. Even if I am doing errands, I pack snacks to take. If I am going out for dinner, I eat clean all day long and don’t skimp out on calories, so that I can better control my impulses when I’m in front of all this delicious, yet unhealthy food. Failing to plan, is planning to fail.
Don’t get me wrong here, weekends are for relaxing and letting go, and part of that can include good food and drinks with loved ones. Just don’t allow your weekends to be a total write-off, because over-indulging, mindlessly eating, and not-planning could equal another 20lbs for you too by the end of the year. Binge eating like this is also an indicator that something bigger is at play here. Use my personal experience as a tool to learn from, and you too will start really noticing all of your hard workouts and clean eating when you slip into your favourite pair of jeans.
Showing you the difference between liking and loving your body,
ashley dale roy