As the work week ends, all you want to do is loosen up, let your hair down, and have fun with friends. Most of the time, this leads to binge eating, ordering takeaways and watching TV shows all day long. By the time your Monday morning alarm sounds, you’re left feeling tired, lethargic and guilty, having undone all your weekday of healthy eating. It doesn’t have to be this way! Let me share 7 simple but effective habits to have a healthy weekend—that way, you’ll enjoy your weekends more and reap the rewards the following week!
Do your weekend errands wisely
An easy way to do more exercise is by finding creative ways to incorporate it into your day to day routine. It’s a no brainer. Don’t always look to your car to get to the local shopping centre, use your bike or walk. If your destination is further away, take the car but park a little further away so you stretch your legs and get some fresh air for a quick health boost. Look to the stairs rather than the elevator and pack healthy snacks to feed your hunger pangs so you’re not tempted by that slice of chocolate cake in the café.
Enjoy the outdoors
Of course the weekend is a time for relaxation and to forget about the stresses of the past week, but try not to let this turn into a weekend of sitting on the sofa. Studies have shown that just fifteen minutes of daily exercise can help boost your life expectancy so get active in the great outdoors and make the most of your precious days off! Go for a walk or a bike ride in the countryside, or go swimming at your local pool. You’ll enjoy this much more and feel reinvigorated afterwards.
Don’t overindulge at breakfast time
A big, fried breakfast with all the trimmings is a welcome weekend treat for most people, especially after a Friday night shindig. But this is a crucial mistake for anyone trying to pursue a healthy lifestyle or lose weight. Stick to a healthy breakfast instead, but have something different and more exciting than your weekday breakfast, so it’s still special. Brunch and coffee time with your friends can also prove problematic for those trying to eat healthy. Avoid the muffin and large cappuccino temptation by making sure you eat a little something before you go, so you’re not hungry.
Make healthy choices at dinner
When it comes to a relaxing Saturday night meal at your favourite restaurant, it’s often hard to resist splurging on something calorific. The answer is to never go to a restaurant absolutely starving; have a healthy snack before you leave, like an apple, so you’re not tempted to order the biggest meal on the menu. Avoid battered, fried or cream-rich foods, and opt instead for lean meats and fish. Have a look online at the menu before you go so you can make your choice before being surrounded by the enticing smells of fatty food.
Avoid weekend binging
It’s easy to slip into a relaxed mind-set and eat whatever you fancy at the weekend, but your body won’t thank you for it. When you’re having a laid-back night in front of your favourite film on Sunday night, swap your usual bar of chocolate or bag of buttery popcorn for healthy snacks. You’ll avoid your Monday morning food guilt and more importantly your waistline won’t suffer.
Catch up on sleep
On the weekend make the most of not having to set your early morning alarm and get an early night on Sunday, so you wake up feeling refreshed and alert on Monday. If you don’t get a good night’s sleep you’ll feel irritable, you won’t perform to your best and you’ll end up craving more sugary and fatty foods to make up for it.
Give yourself a treat
You want to be healthy, but you also want to be happy. You can’t starve yourself of the meals that you love just because you’re trying to be healthy. A cheat meal once a week will lift your mood and give you increased motivation to stay on track, rather that restricting yourself and giving up. So, enjoy tucking into your family Sunday roast or a takeaway on Saturday night. In fact, a cheat meal once a week can actually speed up your metabolism and aid in weight-loss, so you don’t need to feel too guilty!