Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Picnic time!

Hi to the best women's networking group in Southwest Florida!

It seems like everywhere I turn these days it is time for a picnic, or a bar-b-que or a family gathering of some kind! What to do when confronted constantly by all the super-fattening menu options?

First thing you have to do is have a game plan. Look in your daily planner and figure out when and where you will have to deal with all those food choices. You have to decide in advance how to handle it.

One recommendation is to offer to bring at least one item that you can eat safely without drawing too much attention to yourself. I usually volunteer to bring a beautiful green salad. I call it a chopped salad and I use the green leaf lettuce and then take raw zucchini, yellow squash, mushrooms, olives, and green peas(frozen, but defrosted, raw) and cherry tomatoes. I try and avoid cucumbers in the salad as they can make it soggy. I chop everything pretty small, even the lettuce so you don't have to fight the salad to eat it especially if you using paper plates and plastic knives.

Another tip is to have a healthy snack about an hour before you leave for the event. That way you aren't so hungry that you overeat when they finally serve the food. No skipping a meal earlier in the day to "save room" so that you can overeat at the party. It is never a good idea to stuff yourself. If you ever have had that feeling where you feel like you can't sit down or you need to wear loose clothing to feel comfortable, that is not a good thing. If you do need to eat until you feel that full feeling, break that habit right now! Your body can only metabolize so much food at one time, the rest will be stored as fat.

Usually at any kind of summer venue, you should be able to find a piece of chicken and remove the skin, snag some of the boiled shrimp appetizers or put some beans in that salad you brought and just stick to that if all else fails. One small tablespoon of the potato salad and a few bites of a dessert shouldn't cause too much damage. Then grab the younger ones of the group and toss a frisbee around or even a renegade round of follow-the-leader will get your heart rate up and burn some calories in the process!

Even stay-at-home moms face this problem as play-dates turn into fast-food stops with the little ones.
So, whether you are a stay-at-home mom, or out training women in business or networking with other women, I hope you'll keep these summertime tips in mind!

Lynda Waldron, Health Coach