One of the trickiest challenges I had when losing weight was going on holiday, you spend all year saving for that week or two away and then you need to make the decision how you are going to face the food and drink.
While initially losing weight I went on several family holidays and managed to stay on plan and lose weight while away, so I wanted to share a few tips on what I have done previously (I am not as strict these days and I do over indulge but I still make better decisions than I would have before joining Slimming World).
- Stay on plan right up until the minute you actually leave for your holiday, it’s so easy to fall into holiday mode a few days before
- Decide beforehand what you would be happy to see on the scales when you next weigh, if you don’t mind the number then you can just go away and relax, but if you feel that you really need to see a loss then you need to get into the right headspace before you go
- Make others aware of your intentions, I always let my husband and family members know I will be sticking to plan and let them know of how I will be approaching it such as cooking for myself, taking pack lunches or letting them know restaurant preferences etc
- Start planning before you go, if you know the hotel has a breakfast buffet for example, start thinking about all of the items you can have which are free or low syn, go armed with a plan and stick to it. Think boiled eggs, scrambled eggs, ham, grilled tomato’s, fruit, porridge, weetabix etc and less about the waffles, pancakes, danish pastries, fried eggs. If you are in self catering then this should be much easier as you can stick to plan easily but perhaps treat yourself to smoked salmon or something else you don’t have every day as a special holiday treat
- Limit your drinks – cocktails, lager and fizzy drinks soon add up. I love a drink and previously we would have had several pints over lunch, a couple throughout the afternoon, a cocktail before dinner (that would probably have been 50 syns before counting the food) now I try not to start until 5pm and set myself a limit
- Watch for the hidden syns – a small glass of orange juice for breakfast, a coffee topped with full fat milk, a little chocolate left on your pillow, a chip pinched off your kids plate, the dressing already added to your side salad....they all add up and you barely even notice them going in your mouth
- Take a packed lunch or buy something from a shop you can work out the syns for wherever possible, it saves money but more importantly allows you entire control over what you eat, often tourist attractions don’t offer the most healthy or low syn options
- Get in as much body magic as possible, I like to nip to the gym or go for a run every day when I’m away (this links back to letting others know your intentions as that way everyone knows at 8.30 I will be in the gym) but if that isn’t possible I will try and walk as much as I can and you can always take the stairs instead of the lift
- Make sensible choices when eating out or having a takeaway. If you need to be selfish and demand your own dish when ordering a take away for example, do it. Lots of places offer healthier options if you look for them or ask. You can also consider ordering a children’s sized portion (I will often do this if the family is having fish and chips)
- Take your food diary, even if you are way over syns I find just the process of recording what I have eaten makes me automatically make healthier options the next day
- Bulk your meals with salad, if it’s a buffet have a salad as a starter and bulk your main with it as well or order one as a side to your meal to stop you nibbling on the bread
- Be adventurous, try things you wouldn’t normally buy at home or be able to easily get, you may just find something new and low syn you love, my love of mussels was founded on holiday and what an amazing free food they are!
These are my main tips, although I expect there will be several I have missed, but regardless of which approach you take, the main thing is to go away and have a fantastic time....that’s what I will be doing in a few days time.
Happy weight loss everyone.