by Erin Assenza, Wellory Health Coach
It seems like when the temperatures rise so do the number of our social engagements. Whether it’s frequent weekend trips, more happy hours with friends, dating, weddings, or just spending the majority of the time outside – our good intentions for staying healthy can be tested by all the events we are attending.
How can you make sure you are still sticking with your health goals, despite the craziness of summer? Here are my tips:
1. Going out to dinner? You pick the restaurant. We often put our needs behind everyone else’s for fear that we are being ‘annoying’. You don’t have to drag your friends to the latest vegan restaurant if they aren’t into that, but there are plenty of delicious options where everyone can be happy. Take some time to look at menus and decide what has the best options for you. I usually find that choosing a cuisine such as New American or Mediterranean makes everyone happy. After all, who doesn’t love hummus?
2. Split items on the menu. After 3 years of marriage my husband is finally the one suggesting that we split a veggie or salad and a main dish (my work here is done!). Restaurant portions can be huge. So, if you’re dying for the burger, split it with someone else along with a salad. You won’t be hungry.
3. Plan your other meals accordingly. Going to a BBQ tonight and really want that burger? Start the day with a healthy smoothie and eat a filling salad for lunch. This way you can enjoy the menu your friends have provided and still stay on track.
4. Don’t show up to the wedding or BBQ starving. Make sure to have a little snack before you go so you can be more discerning about what you’re choosing to eat.
5. Drink water before drinking rose. Don’t use alcohol as an opportunity to hydrate. That’s what water is for. Before you even pick up a glass of wine or beer, drink a glass of water. This will allow you to drink the rose slowly as its meant to, not chug it because you are dying of thirst.
6. Limit yourself to a few drinks a week- and stick to it. This is setting boundaries with yourself. If you only want to drink 4 drinks this week, only drink 4 drinks! You don’t have to be drunk at every single event.
7. Do something else besides drinking! No matter where you live, there are many social options that don’t require eating and drinking. Take a workout class with a friend, go for a walk to connect, see a movie (and skip the snacks or bring your own trail mix), check out an exhibit (A/C!), go to the beach or park. The purpose of social time is to connect with friends, and if you feel like you need to be fueled with alcohol to do that, then it’s time to look inward.
8. Know before you go. Traveling somewhere? Look up the local restaurants to get a feel for where you can hit up healthy places. I like to google the words “healthy, juice bar, smoothie bar” and I can usually find something.
9. Bring healthy snacks - wherever you go. No matter where I am traveling, I always bring some of my own food, whether that is nuts or seed crisp-breads, portable fruit like apples or plums, a big bag of baby carrots, or some protein bars, I come as prepared as I can. The last thing I want is to be starving with my only option as the Snickers in the mini-bar!
What tip will you be implementing this summer?