By Tina Haupert

During the week, it's not too tough to maintain my weight by watching what I eat and exercising regularly. However, when the weekend comes along, I'm more likely to splurge on my diet and slack on my workouts. Sometimes it's as if on my weekends I undo everything I worked hard to achieve during the week! My goal is always to stay on track but to still have fun, so I use some tips and tricks to maintain my Feel Great Weight. Here's a look at how I handled this past weekend.

Friday
On Friday night, my husband and I arrived in Newport, R.I., ready to relax and unwind with a drink. We stopped by the convenience store and picked up a six-pack of beer and a box of Vermont White Cheddar Wheat Thins. Of course, this wasn't the healthiest happy hour I've ever participated in, but there were slim pickings at the store!

Plan a Saturday morning workout
I was in the mood to unwind with a few pumpkin beers. However, a long marathon training run the next day prevented me from drinking too much. Plus, the more I drink, the more I want to snack, especially when faced with a box of cheddar crackers! Planning an early morning workout kept me in check. I drank only two beers over the course of the entire evening and paced myself with multiple glasses of water. Also, knowing that I'd burn some extra calories in the morning made me enjoy my Friday night splurges a lot more.

Move the snacks
Once I have a couple of beers, I'm immediately drawn to snack foods. If they are nearby, I'll continue to munch away mindlessly. I found myself going back for more and more crackers, so I put a napkin over the bowl to remind me to stop munching. I ended up sneaking a few bites, but I definitely ate less than I would have otherwise!

Saturday
Saturday morning, my husband and I woke up for a 9-mile run, which required a pre-workout snack for fuel. We stopped by a local café for a pistachio-chocolate muffin and an iced coffee.

Share the fun stuff
I absolutely love the special muffins at this particular café. Still, they're nearly as big as my head! Instead of denying myself one of my favorite treats, I shared it with my husband. I needed some food in my stomach to have enough energy to run for more than an hour, but I didn't need as many calories as the muffin provided. Splitting it with my husband and eating only half was the perfect solution.


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Enjoy a drink after dinner
After running 9 miles and a long day of shopping, my husband and I stayed in Saturday night. We ended up ordering pizza, which is not necessarily a low-calorie meal. Still, when my husband returned with a pizza and a 6-pack of beer, I didn't let myself go crazy. I'm all about enjoying a drink with dinner. But instead, I drank some water with dinner and enjoyed one beer after dinner for "dessert." This way, my inhibitions weren't lowered when faced with an entire cheesy pizza!

Next page: Sunday

Sunday
On Sunday, I slept in and enjoyed a leisurely start to my day. Mid-morning, my husband and I joined his parents for brunch. I always find it a challenge to pick a healthy meal that can still overwhelm me with its deliciousness. Usually, I want to eat the chocolate-chip pancakes, but I know there are more nutritious options on the menu.

Be the first to order
I avoid being swayed by other people's breakfast choices by ordering first. My mother-in-law was considering ordering the tempting pumpkin chocolate-chip waffles, so I placed my order before I had a chance to hear about her choices. This way I could stick to my healthy option without being influenced by what she ordered.

Balance my food choices
It's Sunday brunch, so I want to splurge. But at the same time, I don't want to overdo it in the calorie department. Still, what fun is it to pick at egg whites? Instead, I balanced my food choices. I chose a muffin, a fresh fruit cup, a scrambled egg, and an iced coffee with milk. I enjoyed small portions of all of my favorite foods, and this made me feel satisfied both mentally and physically. The combination of carbs, protein, and fat also filled me up and kept me content throughout the day.

Read Tina’s daily food and fitness blog, Carrots ‘N’ Cake.


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