Last week I was on holiday in Cyprus. It was amazing…we were so lucky with the weather and had a brilliant hotel.
Staying half board meant we got access to the buffets they served for breakfast and dinner, and my God… the food!! Literally everything you can think of for breakfast including French toast and waffles, a giant bowl of nutella to go with them, bircher muesli (which I love), plus all the bacon, eggs, pastries, fruit etc. Dinner was equally as incredible with a different theme every night and about 10 different puddings to choose from each time. A foodie’s paradise! Safe to say my boyfriend and I made the most of it all 🙂
My advice to anyone on holiday who wants to enjoy it without coming back having gained half a stone is this:
Firstly, allow yourself to relax and NEVER stress about food on holiday (or at any other time). Life is way too short… when you’re 90 and looking back at life, will you regret having that amazing pudding? Or will you regret the time you spent worrying about it? Second, don’t use my point above as an excuse to eat and drink everything! If you do that, you WILL come back with unnecessary extra weight and feeling way below your best. If you’re at a buffet, I’d advise getting in a source of protein and some fruit or veg as often as possible (same most of the time when eating out) and then go for whatever else you REALLY fancy, that’s really worth the calories to you.
For me this meant taking little bits of lots of things, as there was so much I wanted to try. Leave anything that you’re not that fussed by, eat slowly and be conscious of each delicious mouthful, enjoying it to the max. Then when you feel satisfied, stop there. I’ll be honest, I’m still working on the stopping when satisfied part myself. I get so excited by all the amazing food that a few times I ended up feeling pretty stuffed and bleurgh. The important thing here is to not beat yourself up for it – that won’t help 🙂 Be kind to yourself, see what you can learn (could you have eaten more slowly / consciously? Are there certain choices you would make differently next time?) and then move on.
My boyfriend and I are both foodies and have very sweet tooths (teeth?) but thankfully enjoy being pretty active too. We did regular walks into the local harbour (35 mins each way), played tennis and did some short sessions in the gym. Admittedly the walks to the harbour were often to get some ice cream for lunch (found a place that did ice cream with actual chunks of profiterole in it – see photo above – amazing!!). But with the extra activity our daily step counts actually doubled to around 20,000 steps per day. I gained 1lb on holiday and ate A LOT – this extra activity was hugely helpful.
Now we’re back, I’ve been joining in with my Change For Life online clients and taking photos of my food for this week. Double benefit here is I’m accountable to them which encourages me to eat well, and I can demonstrate to them a week of healthy post-holiday eating. However much weight you may end up putting on over a holiday, an indulgent few days, or if you put on weight at any time, the key is always to not stress and just get straight back on the good stuff after.
For health and weight loss, these are what I encourage clients to aim for: – protein in each meal – lots of colours from fruit and veg for nutrition, plus the benefit of being able to plenty of low calorie healthy food that helps you stay full – 1-2 servings of healthy fats most days (avocado / eggs / salmon / olive oil / nuts / seeds) – being mindful of portion sizes and aware of calories (don’t need to meticulously count every calorie, but being aware of roughly how much you have is very helpful as calories determine progress above everything else) – eating foods you enjoy and that make you feel good.
Below is a photo of my meals and snacks from Monday…
Chocolate protein pancakes for breakfast
Poached eggs on a muffin with salad for lunch
Snacks of strawberries, a clementine and an options hot chocolate
Dinner of 2 chicken, chorizo and veg fajitas in skinni wraps (can find these in Sainsburys and Waitrose, really good wraps and only 90 calories each). Very much enjoyed this day! 🙂
Doing well this week so far and enjoying eating all my favourite healthy meals again. Tomorrow however is an afternoon tea! Really looking forward to it, especially as it’s with family, so will be getting lighter high protein meals for breakfast and dinner, fitting in a walk, and then very much enjoying the experience. Hope you might find a little bit of help or inspiration from this email – always happy to help if you have any questions.