You want to stay on track with your nutrition and still enjoy yourself this holiday season?
Sticking to your diet plan, especially when you’re dieting down, can be tough. Sticking to your diet plan when you’re out with friends, at a party, or at a work function, can be an even bigger challenge. Here’s the plan of attack for a few common situations:
Setting: The Office Christmas Party
1. Offer to bring a healthy dish to the party. Do this even if it’s catered. You’ll know exactly what’s in it and take the guess work out of snacking.
2. Have a healthy meal before you get to the party. If you’re full, you won’t fill up on the bad stuff.
3. Have a glass of water first. A drink or two during the night is ok, but start off on the right foot.
4. Use a dessert plate rather than a dinner plate.
5. Before eating, check out all your options. Almost every party has a veggie platter. Load up there first (but go easy on the dip), then go for the turkey/ham/lean meat option. Mini quiches, sausage rolls, cakes, biscuits, pies, cookies, etc- these are the last to go on the plate.
6. Eat slowly.
7. Enjoy yourself. Mingle, socialize and be merry.
Setting: The Dinner Out with Friends
1. Say no to the bread basket.
2. Ask your waiter how your dish will be cooked, and the ingredients if you are unsure.
3. Say yes to baked, broiled, or grilled. Lean meats are your best option. Trim away any visible fat from everything else.
4. Sauce on the side, if it’s your cheat day. Better yet, no sauce at all. The base ingredients for almost every sauce in existence: butter, oil, mayonnaise, and/or cream. These do not make for good calories.
5. Water, not wine. One glass is ok, but leave it at that. You’ll save money on the cab fare home too.
6. Salad instead of chips, fries, mashed potatoes and the like.
7. Eat slowly. You don’t have to finish it.
8. Split dessert with someone.
Setting: The Family Feast
1. Snack yourself full on veggie sticks before the main event.
2. Lend a helping hand before or after. It will keep you busy and not snacking, and you’ll be the golden child. Might even score an extra present under the tree.
3. Ask if some steamed veggies can be included on the menu. If you’re met with some resistance, offer to make them yourself (this goes along with tip #2).
4. Load up with lean meat and steamed veggies. A plate full of that first and you’ll want a lot less mashed potato, bread rolls, and desserts.
5. Have just a taste of dessert. Most of the time this is enough to satisfy any cravings you might have, after being stuffed full with everything else on your plate.
6. Minimize the alcohol (you might want to be able to drive yourself home whenever the family gets to be too much).
You’ve probably noticed that some of these tips are quite similar from situation to situation. As with so many other aspects of training and nutrition, it’s not rocket science, and hopefully the similarities will make your Damage Control plans that much easier to remember and execute.