How to Stay on Track During Summer Vacations
Summer is in full swing, and hot weather, beach days, and sunshine are just some of the many things that make summer the season of fun. However, summer vacation does come with its share of temptations with respect to food choices. Staying on track with your weight loss plan doesn’t have to be jeopardized during the summer months. In fact, there are many ways you can enjoy food while also eating healthy and keeping attuned to your goals. In this article, we’ll talk about how to cut cravings and stay fit during the next few months.
First Things First: Hydration, Hydration, Hydration!
In general, most people do not adequately hydrate and are in a chronic state of dehydration. This is exacerbated by the fact that caffeine contained in many beverages, such as coffee, tea, certain energy drinks and diet sodas, have a diuretic effect. Alcohol has a similar diuretic effect; that is why alcoholic beverages are NOT included on your Acute Weight Loss Plan, though they are permitted during Maintenance. Greater exposure to higher temperatures and increased activity levels that frequently accompany summer vacations further compound the problem. The knowledge that increased water intake frequently alleviates hunger and food consumption often quells thirst, together emphasize the importance of maintaining adequate hydration, ideally with water, while avoiding caffeinated and alcoholic beverages.
Tasty Food, No Payoff
Curbing cravings does not have to be an excessively difficult process. By considering your own evidence-based practices and methods, you’ll be able to know the foods you should eat and what foods will throw you off track. While sugary and salty treats might be tasty, they can actually lead to premature hunger and overeating, as well as cravings that will definitely put a dent in your diet plan. By reflecting on and learning from personal experience—i.e. realizing what foods work for you to subdue excess hunger and cravings and what foods exacerbate the problem (Schiff), you will be more likely to stay on track and achieve optimal health.
Staying On Track by Staying On Plan
Planning ahead is necessary if you want to stick to your nutritional plan. There are a lot of events during the summer, from cookouts to pool parties, and you should think in advance about what you’re going to eat. If you’re heading out somewhere for dinner, take a look at the menu beforehand. You should have a few ideas in mind. The first, Plan A, is what your first choice of meal would be, while Plan B, your backup plan, is what you will do in the event Plan A fails (Schiff). Plan C, Certainty, is the backup to the backup. More details about this strategy are available on the CardioMender, MD website at www.cardiomendermd.com. You can bring your own food to an event if the menu doesn’t fit with your food plan, or choose to implement a “controlled deviation.”
Nutritional Plan Deviations
There are two types of deviations to be aware of: a nutritional, controlled deviation and an unintended deviation. For the first one, let’s use an example. Say you’re headed to a summer cookout, and you know that the menu there isn’t going to be the healthiest. In an intended nutritional deviation, you plan to go off your healthy eating regimen during the event but commit to reinstating your healthy routine after the event has ended. This type of deviation has a pretty good prognosis, assuming you get back on the road to healthy eating immediately afterward.
The second type of deviation is unplanned; you intend to stick to your diet plan, but the cookout food from our example is just too tempting and you end up getting off track. An uncontrolled deviation is no reason to throw in the towel. The key is what you learn from the experience and how to better approach this type of situation the next time.
Always Get Back Up
The unintended deviation becomes a lesson rather than a tragedy if you get right back on track. It isn’t the end of the world, and you should go easy on yourself. One mistake doesn’t rewrite your whole ending, and you can get back on track by your next meal. You might also consider one or two days of protein eating to help you recover (only if you do not have Type II Diabetes).
With healthy eating comes the need to maintain control and make a conscious effort to ensure that you’re staying with what you have planned and what you know about how your food choices impact you. While it’s okay to deviate from a plan, make sure that the deviation is kept in check. Don’t beat yourself up if you fall off the wagon—it happens. Summer vacation should be about having fun, and you can absolutely do that while staying on track to meet your weight loss and fitness goals.
CardioMender, MD Weight Loss Specialists is South Florida’s most trusted medically supervised weight loss program. We provide customized, safe, rapid weight loss and the means to keep it off. At CardioMender, MD a doctor is ALWAYS available. Start losing weight today, under the supervision of Chief Medical Officer Barry H. Schiff, MD, FACC, a 32-year veteran Board-Certified Cardiologist and Internist. D. Allen Young, MD, FACP, is a Board-Certified Obesity Medicine Physician and Internist and Erica Montecalvo, PA-C.
To find out more about how we can help you reach your goals using proven strategies, visit us at www.cardiomenderweightloss.com or call 954-628-3802 to set up your appointment today.