Stay on Track This Labor Day

Labor Day weekend the unofficial end of summer and an extra day to celebrate. Many of us want to enjoy this time, but celebrations like this often come with tons of unhealthy food and lots of drinks. But you don’t have to let a holiday weekend throw you off track!

Yes, this weekend many of you are planning to hit a barbecue or two. And you know all the usuals will be there: burgers, hot dogs, potato chips, coleslaw, and potato salad. Don’t forget about the extras: ice cream, cookies, and a syrupy frozen drink or two. Oh yes, the perfect ticket to ruin your healthy goals all for one last hurrah! Well try this easy plan of attack to keep you happy, healthy and on track this weekend!

Plan ahead. Let’s be real, no one else but you is thinking about your nutrition plan and goals. So don’t expect to find a bounty of healthy, nutrient-packed foods at your friend’s cookout, your neighborhood block party, or the beach shack. So come prepared! Why can’t you bring healthy dishes to the cookout or block party and snacks in your cooler for the beach. All it takes is a little preparation. Pack up a veggie tray, fruit salad, or some healthy hummus and bring it along. When there are nutritious and tasty options, you’re less likely to over indulge in the fatty or sugary ones.

Don’t go hungry. Attending an event with an empty stomach when you know unhealthy food will be served is a recipe for disaster. Before you go, have a healthy meal or snack to keep yourself from eating everything in sight.

Steer clear of alcohol. Alcohol adds a ton of empty calories! To make things worse, it also weakens your willpower and inhibition. One minute you’re socializing and having a good ol’ time; then before you know it pigging out on all the tasty foods you said you would touch. Now, don’t get me wrong — a responsible drink or two isn’t the worst thing in the world. If you must give in to temptation, do so with extreme caution and moderation. And don’t forget to calculate those added calories into your plan …

Weight loss isn’t about being perfect all the time; it is more a matter of balance. If you just have to have that hot dog, watch what you eat with it and maybe instigate a walk down the beach. Remember, in the end, best intentions aside what matters is what we choose to do. And I know you can make this holiday a happy and healthy one!

Here are a few recipes to help you stay on track this weekend:
Black Bean Dip served with veggies
Watermelon Salad, if you won’t have forks available try cutting the watermelon in wedges

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