It’s the same old story: you work really hard towards your fitness goals all week, then Friday comes along and before you know it you’re back to square one by Monday. The weekend for many people is a time to relax, unwind and have fun. But when so much of that can include booze and unhealthy treats, how can you keep on the plan?
Here are our best weekend hacks to maximise your weekend so that you continue your progress all week through:
Book In To An Unusual Class
If doing your weekday workout doesn’t sound as appealing on your day off, shake it up. Book into a class that catches your eye. It could be dance, boxing or yoga – something that feels out of the ordinary but still works on your fitness.
It’s true what they say, a change is good as a rest mentally. Getting out of your routine will help you to shake off the working week and have fun in a healthy way.
If your gym doesn’t do any interesting classes, take that as an additional positive. A change of scene will add to the excitement and novelty.
Often, meal prep is done for busy work lunches and evenings. But continuing your prep for the weekend will avoid those temptations for a quick fix, high-calorie convenience foods.
Beat yourself at your own game – if you often end up getting a Chinese on a Saturday, prep healthy Chinese food to keep handy. Cauli rice, chicken with honey and soy sauce with wilted pak Choi will satisfy those cravings without putting a dent in your nutritional plans.
Similarly, tomato with curry spices and a whole bread pita makes a great curry substitute instead of a high fat Indian takeaway.
In addition, keep healthy snacks like unsweetened popcorn in an airtight container to have on hand if you’re tempted to go to the shops for some sweets.
If a weekend brunch is your thing, plan a different dish that feels like a treat whilst still fuelling yourself effectively. Balsamic grilled tomatoes with poached eggs and avocado toast will fuel your morning and taste like a luxury start to the day.
Be The Designated Driver
Alcohol is chock full of empty calories. Just one night of boozing can add hundreds of calories to your weekly energy intake. Not only that, but a few drinks or a hangover the next day can lead to some pretty non-nutritious meal choices. To keep focused, volunteer as the designated driver, or only bring out enough money for soft drinks.
If you do drink, stick to clear spirits and fresh juice or soda. This is far lower in calories and easier to digest than drinks such as wine, beer or sugary cocktails. A classic gin and tonic is a great choice that is served pretty much universally.
Plan Social Activities
Socialising often revolves around food and drinks. But you can still be a social butterfly and make great fitness progress. Take charge of the planning and pick activities that are fun but not calorie laden. Taking a walk in a scenic area, visiting a gallery or even going retro with a bowling alley can inject a lot of fun into meeting with friends. If you’re stuck for ideas, online deal websites often have vouchers for leisure activities like paintballing or horse riding at a great value.
Even a dinner party can be a good way to perfect your healthy recipes. Impress your pals with meals that are tasty and nutritious.
Be Ambitious At The Gym
Use the extra free time you have available to make your biggest achievements at the gym. Whether it’s your lifting PB or your quickest 5km, setting a goal keeps you motivated to eat the right fuel and keep your body limber. This is especially effective if you plan your workout for Sunday.
If you are considering booking a personal trainer, the weekend would also be a good time to get booked in. You can channel your extra energy into getting the most of the professional help.
Don’t Let One Treat Escalate
Part of the benefit of eating a balanced diet is that you don’t need to fall into an all or nothing approach. Enjoy a treat if you have one, and then continue with your nutritional plans. Whether it’s a beer, hot dog at the cinema or a piece of cake, it doesn’t have to undo your work in the week. In this way, you will build good habits and establish a consistent and healthy lifestyle.