Hey there, Vic here and I am sitting in the Portland airport waiting on my flight back to Columbus as I write this. It’s been a great weekend, but I definitely indulged a bit too much in the Portland restaurants and especially the Portland beer (I stopped at the Rogue Ales Pub more than once).
All of those heavy meals and beverages come with a cost – I can feel that some of my hard work from the previous weeks of getting back into shape have been eroded. But just like a long vacation weekend can get your weight loss goals a bit off track, a dedicated week of focus on your diet and exercise can help regain your progress. Below are some tips to get you back on track after vacation:
1. Dedicate a day to planning and prep. If you can spare an extra day off of work, spend it at home planning and preparing to get you back into the swing of things for reaffirming your fat loss efforts. Write out exactly what you will eat for the rest of the week and then make a grocery list based on your meal plan. Grocery shop and prepare your meals according to your meal plan. Schedule time for your workouts for the rest of the week. Write out exactly what you will do in each workout that week. Ideally you would be doing this kind of planning and prepping every week, but it’s especially important when trying to get back on track after vacation.
2. Stay away from the scale! That’s right, do NOT weigh your self when you get back from vacation. You know you gained weight, you don’t need the psychological baggage associated with seeing the number on the scale. Instead, rededicate your diet and exercise efforts for a solid week after returning from vacation and then do your weekly weigh in.
3. Be extra strict. For that first week back from vacation, really lock things down. Do not eat ANY grains or dairy, not even in your post workout meal. Keep things limited to the tried and true veggies, lean meat, fruit, and nuts. Keep your portions for all meals small – if you get hungry you can always eat a little more, but you can’t “undo” the food after you eat it.
4. Go back to basics. Take your workouts back to the basic movements the first week you return from vacation. That means push ups, pull ups, squats, and burpees if you are using body weight exercises. And it places your focus on over head presses, squats, and deadlifts if you are using free weights. A focus on the basic movements does not mean to train without intensity. Quite the opposite in fact – a return to the basics allows you to use movements that you are already familiar with so that your mental energy can be focused on upping the training intensity instead of learning a new movement. A return to the basic movements is often a good thing, but it’s especially good to do so when returning from a short lay off such as a vacation.
Often when we are on vacation, we indulge more than we normally would in food and drink that we know is not conducive to our fat loss efforts. But by refocusing our efforts once we return from our trip, we can keep the “damage” to a minimum.
Do you plan and prepare to get back on track when you return from a vacation? Or do you allow your diet and exercise diversions to continue after your vacation ends? Let me know in the comments below.
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