06 Jul Preparing for Summer Cookouts: How to Stay Healthy
Summer is the time of cookouts. All of your family and friends gather to share in company, laughter and, of course, food. More often than not, those foods aren’t exactly the healthy kind. From creamy potato and pasta salads to pie, summer cookouts might be delicious, but they won’t help you lose weight or stay healthy.
We understand that you can’t go to a cookout and NOT eat. Hello, we’re Southerners. It’s rude to not eat. That being said, how can you stay on track health-wise while still enjoying the temptations of summer feasting? We have a few tips to help you stay on track (or even get back on track). Let’s do this.
- Bring something healthy to the cookout. We have another blog that gives some great healthy cookout alternatives.
- Pay attention to portions. While we won’t tell you to refrain from the deliciousness, we do recommend not overdoing it. These little tips can help you:
- Tennis ball or baseball (or even your clenched fist) = one cup
- Cell phone (unless you have the iPhone 6 Plus) or a deck of cards = 3 oz of meat
- Thumb = 1 tablespoon (handy for salad dressings)
- Don’t go crazy on the carbs. That will leave you feeling sluggish and bloated.
- Prioritize your favorite food. Craving a delicious burger? Then eat one, but keep your sides to salad, veggies, and fruits.
- After you finish eating, go play with the kids or take a short walk. You can burn some calories, have fun with family and stay away from the guac.
- Eat well leading up to the cookout. If you know you will be eating poorly, try clean eating for the days leading up to the event.
- Get an extra day of exercise in that week. Instead of hitting the gym 3 times, go 4 times.
- Workout the morning of the cookout. If anything, you won’t feel as guilty when you eat dessert.
- Eat clean the next day. This is mostly for your body. When you load up on food that isn’t good for you, the next day you can feel heavy, bloated and gross. Try eating clean the next day. Salads, green smoothie, fruit, veggies. The good stuff.
- Forgive yourself. We can’t all be perfect, and it is totally fine to indulge every once in a while. So don’t beat yourself up if you eat a piece of pie (or two). In the famous words of a certain Disney princess, “Let it go!”
We hope these tips help keep you! Now go enjoy those cookouts! We’ll see you at the gym tomorrow.