I loved the weekends. Weekend food was fun. Cinnabons in the mall. (Yes, the plural was deliberate) Large buttered popcorn at the movie theatre, chips and cheese after the kids went to bed, special “just because” desserts and fast food restaurants were normal fare for me before I lost 150 pounds. Why is it that even when I was dieting, which quite frankly was often, would I throw all care and concern out the window just because the clock said 5:00 p.m. and the calendar declared “The Weekend Has Begun!”
Weekends throw us off our schedules. Monday thru Fridays are predictable for a lot of us. Weekday by weekday we go through our days knowing what to expect. Predictability helps with weight loss. So when the weekend comes around with its crazy kids schedules, get togethers with family, birthday parties and errand running, our predictable eating schedule is out the window. Unfortunately for me, also out the window would go any semblance of making good choices. I really wouldeat 2 Cinnabons, which I now know have 813 calories a piece, washed down with a diet coke.
I would let the freedom of the weekend schedule be an excuse to “take a break” from my diet and every time I did that, I’d fail to start my diet back on Monday. The freedom of weekend schedules can be wonderful. It’s healthy emotionally to have some days during the week that you are able to catch up with friends and get some things done around the house. But with that freedom comes the pitfall and danger of letting down your guard with regards to your food choices. Year after year went by with me using the day of the calendar as an excuse to eat whatever I wanted. And year after year I got bigger and bigger.
The year I lost weight I realized that weekends were yet another thing I had to worry about.
Previously the different diets I had tried felt restrictive and rule oriented, so when I started losing weight using my own plan, I wanted to lose weight in a way that I could follow always, not just on the weekdays, and not just until I lost weight. I wanted something that really would become a new way of life for me.
So using my three steps, I started losing weight. Weekends which were previously a food free for all became less about the food and more about relaxing and enjoying the family being together. I consciously chose to not overeat, not buy the Cinnabon when we were at the mall, and bring my own snack to the movies. (I know, you’re not supposed to do that, but who is going to tell?!)
Realizing and acknowledging that weekends were dangerous for me was one more step towards achieving my goals. As you head out for kids ball games, trips to mall, cookouts with family and friends, remind yourself that the weekends are about recharging your emotional batteries, and not about eating as much food as you possibly can!
Even to this day, all these years into maintenance I am still deliberate about not overeating on the weekends. How do you do on the weekends now as opposed to before you started getting healthier? Diane