It's summer, which means vacations are in full swing. Many people fear that this will equate to weight gain. However, this doesn't have to be the case. Just because you're enjoying different cuisine and are out of your typical routine doesn't mean that your body is going to somehow rebel against you and pack on the pounds. Spending your vacation in fear of this doesn't sound like much fun.
Here are some tips:
- Trust your body – It has built in mechanisms for hunger and fullness. Eating when you are hungry and stopping when you are satisfied doesn't cause weight gain. Listen to these signals and they won't steer you wrong.
- Don't "save up" ahead of time – Cutting back on your eating or trying to exercise more before a trip only puts your body into deprivation mode, thus decreasing your metabolism and increasing the likelihood of weight gain. Talk about shooting yourself in the foot.
- Eat 3 meals per day, plus snacks on your trip – This pattern of consistently eating every few hours keeps your blood sugar stable and prevents extreme hunger that sets up overeating. Grazing all day leaves you never feeling satisfied, so keep your meals/snacks structured and intentional.
- Focus on having fun – After all, that's why you took a vacation, right? Spending all of your time focusing on the food, either by restricting yourself or eating without abandon, detracts from the enjoyment of the trip. Sure, food can be part of the fun of travel, but let it have its place as just one area for enjoyment. Find ways to enjoy other aspects of the trip too – the sights, sounds, people, activities, etc.