Summer time is vacation time. It’s the time of year that everyone looks forward to. The time when relaxation and change of pace become priority. It’s also the time of year when many decide it’s about time they treated themselves. Vacation = temptation: be it an ice cream during a leisurely stroll around town, an evening cocktail, or a delicious local specialty we have always wanted to try. On vacation, we want to enjoy ourselves. And being a Free Athlete, you’ve definitely earned it. But when summer’s over, it’s time to get back on track. Back to your goal.
Is it difficult for you to get rid of your holiday patterns? Do you catch yourself drinking a glass of wine in the evening or indulging in yet another ice cream? We have 5 tips to help you focus on a healthy diet after the summer break.
Do your own cooking
Sure going out for dinner is fun on holiday, but it’s good to get back into the swing of preparing your own meals more often. Use fresh herbs and spices. Avoid artificial additives. Homemade dishes from fresh ingredients will provide you with all the important nutrients. The aromas arising from cooking stimulate our sense of satiety. As a result, we end up eating smaller amounts during meals and feel “satisfied” earlier. Doing your own cooking will also help you enjoy your meals more, rather than just gulping them down. Don’t have the opportunity to cook during the day? Then prepare your meal the night before. Many dishes can be taken along and also taste delicious cold.
Be vigilant about fixed meal times
In the beginning, it may be difficult to go back to fixed meal times. However, regular meals and the breaks in between are important for the body to optimally process nutrients and provide us with energy. Soon enough, you’ll realize that your body gets used to regular meal times and that you will no longer feel hungry between meals. A combination of complex carbohydrates, protein, fat, and plenty of vegetables keep blood sugar levels constant and make you feel full. Food cravings will be a thing of the past. In our article on blood glucose and insulin, you will find the relevant background information on this topic.
Be aware of what you eat.
Make time to eat. Schedule your meals into your day. If necessary, set a firm time for every meal and enter it in your calendar. Don’t just eat because you’re bored. Meals in front of the television or during a phone call are taboo. If your meal doesn’t grab your full attention, you tend to eat more than you actually need. So find yourself a place with little distraction, a place where you can eat in peace and pay attention to your food. Become fully aware of what you eat. Note taste, consistency, temperature… and always remember to chew your food well. You’ll feel satisfied more quickly, and your body will digest the nutrients better.
Hunger or appetite?
When am I really hungry, and when is it only a craving or boredom that makes me eat? Learn to distinguish between real hunger and cravings. For this reason, the previous tip is so important. You will learn to develop a better awareness of your body and your feeling of hunger.
Tip: Not sure whether you are actually hungry? Wait 20 minutes and try to busy yourself with something else. If it is only a craving, it will pass after 20 minutes.
Don’t forget to drink (water)!
In summer, you’ll find it easier to drink plenty of liquids. Then, we lose much water due to heat and sweat, which automatically stimulates thirst. But with falling temperatures, our sense of thirst decreases. Although during colder seasons, we don’t need as many liquids as in the summer, it is important to drink sufficient amounts. Water keeps the mucous membranes moist and intact. As a natural protective barrier, they protect our body from viruses and bacteria. Any change of season makes our immune system particularly vulnerable to pathogens.
Water should always be the first drink of choice. Sugar-free teas are just as well suited to supply you with liquids. Their advantage: they provide many valuable phytonutrients and warm you from the inside, especially when the days are once again getting shorter and colder.
Tip: Sometimes we confuse hunger with thirst. It is therefore advisable to drink a glass of water before each meal. Your stomach will thus be “pre-filled,” which will make you feel satisfied faster.
No matter how far you crossed the line during your vacation, it’s important that you never lose sight of your goals. Remember your successes and build on them. Paying attention to a healthy diet is often easier than you think. Are you unsure of how to plan your daily meals? Are you running out of new ideas? Get our nutrition coach and choose from many varied and balanced recipes.