Struggling with food choices when socialising? Here’s how to socialise without gaining weight as a woman over 40.
We’ve worked with thousands of women over 40 to help them develop a healthier lifestyle. One of the most tricky situations to navigate for these women is social gatherings, especially when it comes to avoiding gaining weight.
It can be difficult to make the right decisions when it comes so socialising. With alcohol flowing, delectable food surrounding you and exciting options on the menu… our clients can often get carried away with the options.
Can you socialise without gaining weight?
It can be super easy to stick to healthy food and exercise habits during the week. Then, when the weekend comes, good intentions go out the window! You may find yourself stepping on the scales on Monday morning… only to find you’ve undone all your hard work.
However, it is possible to socialise without gaining weight. Rather than falling off the wagon completely after an indulgent weekend… with the right approach, you can quickly drop excess weight.
In our most recent podcast episode, we revealed our top strategies for socialising without gaining a single pound. Read on to find out what we suggest!
Firstly, change your mindset
Most mainstream diets have taught followers the dos and don’ts of a healthy lifestyle. They instil the idea that foods are either good or bad… thinking mostly in black and white.
This leads people to think that as soon as they’ve had one ‘bad’ thing… that they’ve ruined their hard work! They go on to throw their diet out the window, thinking they’ll start again tomorrow.
In reality, dieting is a sliding scale. Making good choices 70% of the time is still miles better than not at all. Not every decision has to be perfect for it to be worth making.
We recommend allowing yourself some wiggle room. Make the ‘right’ decision as often as you can, but don’t stress too much about that extra glass of wine.
Balance out the calories
One of our best tips for avoiding gaining weight when socialising… is to balance out your social events.
Most people don’t tend to plan ahead for family gatherings or a restaurant visit. This means the added calories of such events may be undoing your hard work.
However, if you plan ahead for these occasions, it makes it much easier to make it work. If you know you’re heading out for a few drinks with friends one evening… try balancing this out during the day.
For example, have a small breakfast and lunch. Whether it’s some greek yoghurt and fruit or a smaller portion of porridge than usual… making a small tweak to your portions will mean you can consume much more during events.
This has worked for plenty of our clients on our Fit Over 40 program. They’ve gone on to lose 1-2 stone in 12 weeks, all while enjoying socialising and meals out!
Remember, it’s how you view the week that matters – not just the day. Rather than saying ‘it’s been a bad day’ or ‘I was good today’… try to see the bigger picture.
Manage alcohol intake
It’s a common misconception that alcohol makes socialising more fun. The buzz you get while drinking is usually down to serotonin release, caused but having a good time. This happy hormone takes just 30 minutes to develop, with or without alcohol!
This built-in biological response encourages us to socialise and be part of ‘the tribe’. This was essential thousands of years ago, and it remains with us to this day.
Test this for yourself; next time you fancy a glass of wine at home, try to do it with no distractions. Without your favourite show on or some music to listen to… you’ll find the buzz isn’t the same.
Alcohol contains a lot of hidden calories, and causes increased cravings. We’ve all experienced the alcohol munchies after a few glasses of red! In the long-term, these factors can lead to unwanted effects on the waistline.
So, what’s the solution? You don’t need to cut out alcohol all together. Simply try making better choices.
For example, a single gin and tonic has about a quarter of the calories of a glass of wine. Even try gin essence, which provides all the flavour with 90% less alcohol!
Top tip: try driving to social situations so you need to avoid the alcohol when you’re there. This way, you’ll try opting for the low-calorie, low-alcohol options!
These three top tips are sure to help you enjoy socialising without gaining weight. Rather than feeling hopeless and lost after a tough week… you’ll know you’ve make some good choices to keep seeing progress.
If you’re interested in finding a long-term, sustainable diet designed for women over 40, you can find out more about working with us here!