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Old 04-23-2010, 02:22 PM   #1
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Default "Weekend Calories May Wreck Your Diet"

Hey! Here's an article about how weekend eating can end up slowing weight loss--especially if you are eating "off plan" on the weekend:


Comments? Thoughts?

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Old 04-23-2010, 02:57 PM   #2
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Great article. This is totally my problem - I always ruin all my hard work on the weekends.
my blog - countingmycalories.com

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Old 04-23-2010, 03:03 PM   #3
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I've know this for a while and I noticed that my loss was 2 steps forward and 1 step back. I cleaned up my weekends an am getting much better results now. I am however considering for my maitenance plan to only add calories to my weekends and maybe a few to my weekdays but definately more on the weekends. I think this will be a very livable lifestyle for me.
My Journey
268 lbs - Journey Begins (January 11, 2006)
197 lbs - 71 lbs lost (October 15, 2007)
247 lbs - 50 lbs gained pregnancy (August 22, 2008)
195 lbs - baby weight gone (July 7, 2009)
168 lbs - 100 lbs lost (March 26, 2010)
148 lbs - GOAL! 120 lbs lost (July 18, 2010)
138 lbs - 10 lbs under goal (December 29, 2010)
PR 1/2 Marathon - Time 1:59:50 (November 11, 2012)
PR Marathon - Time 4:40:53 (March 18, 2012)
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Old 04-23-2010, 03:06 PM   #4
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Depends on the kind of weekend I've planned.

If I spend the morning doing cardio & a Pilates class at the gym, then take the train into Manhattan & walk around all day, going to movies, a show, galleries, museums, or what have you, and grab salad bar at Whole Foods, I'm good. In fact, I burn more calories than usual.

But ... if ....

My mother's visiting, and we go out, shopping or whatever, my day gets trickier. See, she gets up late, has breakfast about 10 AM. (I have gotten up & had breakfast at 6 AM & gone to gym at 7 AM.) Then wants to go out all day. Usually, by the second store, I'm ravenous since it's 1 PM, but she's not. She doesn't want to stop what we're doing till like about 3 PM. She even forgets about being hungry. Then she buys chocolate or something in one of the stores & eats it in the car. Then she eats a really big lunch that's really more like a dinner. And I'm so tempted to join in, because I am so very hungry & dissatisfied with the apple & handful of almonds I brought, which didn't hold me for long. My whole day goes out of whack.

Or if I was overwhelmed with work all week & it runs into the weekend, & I have 35 pages of badly translated English to finish rewriting, and I need to spend my whole Saturday & maybe part of my Sunday working on it, then I am trapped at my desk & I am resentful. And I start feeling phantom hunger pangs for snacks all day long. Like every hour or so. Because I hate sitting at my desk having to work when it's a nice day outside & I'm supposed to be enjoying my weekend. I get restless, and the kitchen is nearby. The kitchen has healthy things in it, but you don't want to see me getting into trail mix all day long or eating lots of handfuls of nuts, one after the other, or pouring cup after cup of decaf black coffee doctored up with Splenda.

There's also the all-day-cooking marathon Sunday. (Three nights a week, I get in after work & the gym at 8 PM or later. My goal is to be in bed within two hours, so I don't cook -- I warm up something I cooked on the weekend.) And during the all-day-cooking marathon, some tasting goes on. Again, I am cooking healthy food, from scratch, but still, stuff is getting into my mouth that wouldn't otherwise be there.

Very tricky, the weekends. Very tricky.

Last edited by saef; 04-23-2010 at 03:10 PM.
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Old 04-23-2010, 03:19 PM   #5
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I totally believe this, especially as my weight gets lower, and those calorie deficits are harder to build up. My husband is away during the working week most of the time, so it's very, very easy for me to eat on the lowest end of my calorie range Monday through Friday afternoon. When he's home, meals tend to be heavier, so I compensate both by eating so lightly during the week, and then having some wiggle room in my budget over the weekend. I'm not going hog-wild with it, but I end up eating about 1200 per day during the week, and up to about 1600-1700 on the weekends. It seems to be the right balance for continued, fairly steady weight loss for me.
Began 14 August 2008
Initial goal of 175 reached 5 July 2010
Goal reset to 160
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Old 04-23-2010, 03:25 PM   #6
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Sometimes I think every day is tricky for me. I have an odd schedule, though so that could account for it. I have never gotten carried away and gone over my limit in the almost 9 weeks since I started, but I always feel like I could fall roght on off and just eat chips and chocolte all day forever. I guess I'm still in a place where I have to be accountable for everthing I eat, every moment of the day. For now. Maybe the time will come when I can eat more or differently again, but I'm planning on eating the way I eat now just in case the good ol' days never come back.

If we are doing anything on weekends now, I either have friends here so I can cook and keep track of what I'm eating, or I don't eat when everyone else does or I take my own pre-calculated food. I haven't been to a restaurant yet, and I haven't been to the movies...places where I already know I would have a hard time staying on plan. Robert works on Friday evenings, so no issues there. Lots of movies at home on Saturday evenings, but no popcorn.

I can see how easily a person could blow a whole week's work/calorie counting just in a single meal with friends, or with a soda a popcorn...so I hide from the opportunity for now.


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Old 04-23-2010, 03:37 PM   #7
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Weekends are tricky for me as well. What's helping me lately is: Getting up at the same time as I do during the week, and working out right away after eating my first breakfast; eating mostly the same stuff at the same times as I would during the week; planning my "special" food stuff for the weekend ahead of time so that I know exactly what it is and how much I'm having; and avoiding eating out by promoting non-food activities to do with my husband and family.

Recently I feel like I have the weekends pretty well under control, due to the changes I have made.
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Old 04-23-2010, 03:43 PM   #8
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I absolutely can NOT "take the weekends off". I used to drink heavily Friday night, drink heavily Saturday night, then eat junk food all day on Sunday (literally, all day). We called it Fat Sunday. Eew. I also used to be 250 lbs.

Of course, now that I am 31 and have a toddler, I don't binge drink on the weekends anymore (I sure don't bounce back like I used to!!). AND because I only get Sunday to sleep in (hubby gets to sleep in on Saturdays - we take turns getting up with our son), my weekend schedule is getting more and more like my weekday schedule which IS helpful.

I can do good work all week and totally blow it on the weekends. Also - if I eat out once during the weekend, even if I make the best choices possible - it is still more fat/calories than a piece of grilled chicken and a bag of veggies.

"I'd rather waltz than just walk through the forrest"

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Old 04-23-2010, 03:50 PM   #9
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I think I got weekends under control when I decided I will eat the same food plan, no matter what day of the week. My eating plan is already flexible- just parameters on how often I eat and the composition of each meal.

Because of my busy weekend schedule, I have learned to be okay with eating at vastly different times. Also, I have trained myself not to snack even if I am up very late. I remind myself that my next meal will come & there is no need to panic and grab a snack.

And I get a good bit of exercise on the weekend. Sometimes too much as evidence by my Monday morning soreness.

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Old 04-23-2010, 07:29 PM   #10
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It's definitely the lack of structure for me, and being home near the fridge. I work 5 hours a day in the evening Monday through Friday. I have the hardest time from about 11 am to when I leave the house at 2:45 not grazing constantly. It's the same problem I have on Sundays, too. But Saturdays are not bad because I work in the morning and early afternoon. Night time eating has never been an issue for me, so while I really prefer working evenings, working days is better for me as a dieter.
1st goal--216 (lowest weight since moving to NC): achieved 5/14/10
2nd goal--203 (lowest weight post college):
3rd goal--199 (Onederland!)
4th goal--189 (where I'd like to be before really trying to get pregnant)
5th goal--180 (100 lbs. from my highest weight ever)
6th goal--169 (overweight bmi)
7th goal--140 (normal bmi)

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Old 04-23-2010, 11:04 PM   #11
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I treat the weekends like any other day.

A lot of the times, my weekly "treat" meal falls on the weekend. Since I am in maintenance mode, I plan one nice meal a week (usually in a restaurant) where I have a nice dinner, a glass of wine, split a dessert (try to stay out of the bread basket!). It is a nice dinner, but ultimately an on plan dinner because I avoid my "forever no's" - fried foods, creamy foods, soda.

Otherwise, all the other food is just like I eat during the week. Same breakfasts, same lunches. If I'm out running errands, I bring my healthy snacks (dried mango, Cliff Nectar bar) or I get a skinny latte. If I've already had a treat meal during the week and we eat out at a restaurant, I get an on plan meal.
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Old 04-28-2010, 06:35 PM   #12
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Great article. I use my apps and plan the calories. i am getting close to goal and can not slack off if I want the weight to come off, which I do.

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Old 04-28-2010, 09:05 PM   #13
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A lot of us got into a bad situation with horrible habits about food. Portions that were too large, high fat, high sugar, processed food and not enough of nutritious, healthy food. I really believe one of the keys to long term success is really changing our habits so that we want, crave, and desire the right kind of food not because it is something that is good and healthier for us but because we really take joy in preparing and eating fresh, nutritious food.

One of the most encouraging things for me this time is that my taste for food is changing. Even when I go out for a "splurge" meal at a restaurant I really want to eat healthier options. (The sad thing is those options are limited at a lot of restaurants.) Even when I've tried a bit of the sugary fatty junk like the stray french fry, onion ring, coconut cake it has really been disgusting to me.

My body and my taste buds want better food. I'm not unconsciously shoving junk into my body anymore. I'm really trying to taste and savor the foods I do eat. I really will know that I'm "there" when I'm almost always making the right choices not because I want to lose weight but because that is the food I most enjoy.
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Old 04-28-2010, 10:43 PM   #14
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I find that while I tend to have a larger breakfast on Saturday, it's also later in the morning, and I often have a very light lunch. So the weekends aren't usually too bad for me, unless we go out.
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Old 04-29-2010, 01:20 PM   #15
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Ahhh, the big fear. My first week back at it, I did FANTASTIC during the week and then POW! the weekend hit and I screwed it up. Anyway, in the past when I would have one bad day, I'd say, "forget it, I'm already off, I might as well just wait until Monday to get back on track." But this past weekend was the first time I said, "No way!" I got right back on track at dinner Saturday night and Sunday rocked.

This week has been great. I WILL stay focused this weekend. My problem is often skipping breakfast and lunch on those lazy days. So, I went for a walk first thing Sunday morning. It was a good idea...kept me mentally focused the reast of the day.

Good luck to everyone this weekend.
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