We know Summer is here and you’re looking forward to hanging out with your mates and enjoying yourself. Are you wondering how to navigate all of these social events without derailing all of your hard work? We believe that having an active social life is healthy and shouldn’t be controlled by strict dieting. These social hacks have been tried and tested, to allow you to have an epic Summer, treat yourself to a few naughty snacks, enjoy a few bevs with your mates and look your best.
1. Eat before you leave. The last thing you want to do is arrive at a social event already hungry. If you have already eaten, you are less likely to be tempted by the nibbles that are put out before the barbecue and be able to maintain portion control throughout the event. This can be a healthy snack such as a piece of fruit and a protein shake.
2. Don't have eyes bigger than your stomach. If you’re worried about over-eating at the event, don’t have eyes bigger than your stomach and load up your plate or over order. Chances are once you have it on your plate or you have paid for it, you will push yourself to finish it, when you actually would have been quite satisfied with less food. After finishing eating, wait 10 minutes and if you’re still hungry, you can always order more food or go back for seconds.
3. Choose your alcohol carefully. Opt for lower calorie alcohols such as vodka or gin and mix these with either soda, tonic or zero sugar soft drink options. There is also the option of faking it for a few of your beverages, for those of you who have friends that are always putting pressure on you to drink. In between drinks, just order a soda with a wedge of lime in a short glass, no one has to know. If you do get caught out, stick to your bicep guns and remember it does not affect anyone else if you choose not to drink alcohol. Say it again.
4. Hit your protein goals early in the day. On the day of the event, consume high protein meals in the lead up. Save your carbs and fats for once you are at the event. For example, don’t start your day off with your usual breakfast of oats, toast or cereal but have an oven baked marinated chicken breast instead. This might seem strange but this is why it is a hack. Give it a go.
5. Reduce your calories during the week. In the days leading up to the social event, try to reduce your caloric intake by around 200 calories per day. This allows you to essentially ‘make space’ in your daily calories for the cheat meal or cheat day without putting yourself into a caloric surplus for that week. This allows you to consume more calories on the day and enjoy the burger and fries with your mates without going over your weekly calorie goal.
5. Have food prepared ready for the next day. When we are hungover or tired, the last thing we feel like doing is cooking. Often we can navigate the day of the event quite well but then let ourselves down the following day by failing to plan. Pre-make a homemade pizza on pita bread with plenty of veggies the day before. Heat that up in the microwave the day after, instead of ordering a pizza for example.
7. Drink plenty of water. A great way to stay hydrated throughout an active day of socialising and keep you feeling fuller. Ideally, for each alcoholic drink, have a glass of water. It can be hard to maintain this when your mates are stirring you up for being “on the waters” and the best way to avoid the flack is to order a water with every alcoholic drink you order. Skull the water straight away so you are not carrying it around or nursing it and drawing unwanted extra attention to it. Then sip on your alcoholic drink and enjoy it. Or ideally, stick to your bicep guns and do it your way, don’t let anyone else’s negativity get to you, as the old saying goes, they are just jealous of your willpower anyways!