How to Have a Social Life While Losing Weight

I just kicked off an 8-week fat loss coaching program this Monday!  Me and 9 others are ready to rock and everyone is excited!  

The biggest point I can stress to these guys, or anyone looking to lose weight, is to know, understand and accept that life will happen.  The world doesn’t stop, people don’t stop making cookies, going out to eat or going out to bars just because you have a weight loss goal. Life keeps going on so it’s really important to learn how to navigate those situations without restricting all the time and without turning into a hermit and skipping out. I’m going to show you how you can go out to eat, drink alcohol and have desserts and treats while still losing weight. 

 

Going Out To Eat

The whole point of going out to dinner is to enjoy yourself, your company and a good meal, right?  Now I know some of you might actually enjoy ordering a garden salad with grilled chicken, fat free dressing and water but that just sounds kind of sad and I know it wouldn’t fill me up for more than an hour at most..so I have two options for you.  First is order smart and second is ordering what you actually want.

Order Smart.  Start with protein.  For this example let’s say you choose steak (yummm).  Next order of business is veggies.  There are ALWAYS sides of vegetables- usually a side of mixed veg or some asparagus or something.  Add that to your meal.  Then order a glass of wine OR take a roll from the bread basket, but don’t do both.  Now you have a meal with protein (steak), carbs (wine/bread) and veggies and probably some fat from cooking.  This a really good, balanced meal..  Remember that you can always modify a meal to meet whatever need you have.

Order what you really, really want. If you want chicken parm, go for it.  Just know that you’re going to have to account for this during the day so you’ll want to cut back on starches and fat earlier in the day to make it work. It’s a trade-off.  Plug into your hunger and fullness cues and stop eating when you’re feeling satisfied.  No guilt, no shame, just enjoy your meal then move on.

Decide on whichever choice makes you feel the best.  If you’re still working on problems with food guilt and ordering chicken parm would send you into a tail spin, stick with ordering smart. If you’re feeling confident in being able to eat what you want and let it go as soon as you’re done, enjoy the chicken parm. It’s your choice so pick whichever one will set you up for the most success!

 

Drinking Alcohol

THIS is the million dollar question.  Can you drink alcohol and still lose weight?

I think so 🙂

Just like anything else you just have to be MINDFUL of what you’re drinking.  One of my Fat Loss gals is going away this weekend and knows without a doubt she’ll be drinking.  She asked what I thought she should do so I told her drink plenty of water before, during and after, stick to clear alcohol and calorie free mixers.  Since she usually drinks hard cider she’ll save herself about 60 calories per drink.  Not much if she was just having one or two but over the day she could be saving hundreds.  This is also not the norm for her to go all out on the weekends, so we know it won’t impact her efforts all that much.  It’s only one weekend.

Now if you’re someone like me who was drinking a glass or two of wine most nights of the week, you’ll want to consider cutting back a bit to speed up with weight loss process. I’ve ask my Fat loss peeps to limit their alcohol intake to 1-2 during the week (if at all) and no more than 2 per weekend. Once they get to maintenance the amount of alcohol can increase.. woo hoo! (If you want to learn more about alcohol and weight loss, my friend Lacey just wrote an awesome and more detailed post about it!  It’s a great read…click here)

 

Having Dessert or Treats

This is a requirement of anyone on a weight loss journey who is working with me. You MUST allow yourself treats if you want them.  Some people don’t care about sweets or treats at all but some can’t live without them.  So how does that work?  Is it easier to just abstain from cookies and chocolate for 8 weeks, lose the weight, then slowly add it back in?  NO.  I’ve never known someone who can abstain, abstain, abstain then “slowly” add something back into their diet.

Restriction = Binge

Exposure = Control

You have to start exposing yourself to foods that you feel like you have no control over.  I went into detail of how to do that here.  Weight loss is kind of like a puzzle. With some practice, you’ll learn how to fit anything into your plan and still have a super successful fat loss journey. It takes some thought and some planning but I gets easier the more you practice. Some examples of how to incorporate treats are listed here.

  • Candy/Cookies = carbs and sometimes fat. So at your next meal take away the starch (and maybe fat depending on what you ate) and have your protein and veg.
  • Trail Mix = carbs and fat. At your next meal take away the fat and starch and have your protein and veggies.
  • Pizza = fat, carbs, some protein.  Limit fat and carbs leading up to the pizza and keep water and veggies high.

See how this works?  You just have to sub out some things to make it work.

 

Final Thoughts

At the end of the day there’s literally nothing you can eat in one day or even a week that can ruin your progress. There is nothing that can’t be reversed and the only way to fail at weight loss is to stop trying. Weight loss is 100% about what you do consistently and following a program that works for you.  So you can go out to dinner, have a cookie or a slice of cake, have a few cocktails and nothing bad will happen, I promise, so long as the majority of your meals are on point.  Weight loss doesn’t have to feel so restrictive.  It doesn’t have to feel like a battle or a struggle.  It can actually be enjoyable and kind of fun because you’re getting to eat what you love while getting results at the same time.  The keys to lasting weight loss are to practice figuring out the puzzle (how to fit treats in) and staying mindful through the process (hunger and fullness cues). 


Be sure to sign up for my newsletter to get more info like this (sign up here) and feel free to reach out to me any time. I’m always interested in hearing any questions or thoughts you have pertaining to nutrition, fitness or mindset. When I hear from you it helps me create content that can help!  

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