Dr. Scinta – Summer Slacking and Weight Loss
Many people think summer is an easy time for weight loss. The weather is nice (if you’ve always wanted to live in a tropical rain forest), fresh produce is plentiful, and oh, the parties! Graduation parties, weddings, BBQs, vacations. Personally, I think summer is the most challenging time to stick to a program, because the days lack a schedule, and a rhythm. So if during the lazy days of summer, you find yourself slacking, you are not alone. Here are some tips to make sure you don’t go off the deep end:
- Give yourself a break. If you decided you need some freedom this summer, shift into maintenance mode. First: know your numbers. Go back to the last sheet we gave you with your total calories burned listed, and get close, but don’t exceed this number. My number is close to 2,000 calories a day- a tolerable number. If I eat every 3 hours starting at breakfast and don’t exceed that number, I won’t gain weight. How do I know? I weigh myself daily, and so should you if you choose this path. Always weigh in the am, preferably without any clothes. If you catch yourself sneaking up again, don’t bury your head in the sand! Go back to your tools: meal replacements, if needed, food diary, lots of water, regular exercise. If you are still struggling, call and get back in. Remember, this is not a race, it is a journey. You can stay into maintenance as long as you need to get your momentum back, and attack the next block. ( By the way, our biggest losers- those that have lost well over 100#- do it in chunks with periods of maintenance in between when they feel burned out.)
- Plan ahead. If you know you will be going to a function, plan ahead! Have meal replacements that day so you have more calories to play with at that event, and fill your tank before you go! Going to an event hungry is like going grocery shopping when you haven’t eaten. If you are bringing something, make it a salad or a veggie/fruit tray. This insures you have something healthy to munch on. If you are going out to dinner, review the menu ahead of time. The majority of restaurants (including local ones) have their menus online, many with calorie counts.
- Watch the alcohol. Remember, studies have shown that mindless eating dramatically increase when we drink alcohol. Then you are consuming the calories of the alcohol plus the calories of the food. Also, remember what lightweights you now are! You are apt to feel the effects of alcohol much faster now that there is less fat to absorb it.
- Don’t forget to exercise. Many of you have seen my artistry I call “Mickey with the boil on his chin.” The point is, exercise (Mickey’s head) is the central part of a healthy day. When we exercise we tend to eat and sleep much better. We make better choices. We plan better. ( BTW: the ears are nutrition and fluids. The boil is mood. ) During these difficult economic times, we need all the serotonin and endorphins we can get. Exercise releases this beauties and does so for free!
Reward your successes. It is not too late. Get yourself a nice new outfit now that you have worked so hard for success. You deserve it.