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I’m sure there are some of you who have spent the last few months working you’re butts off to get ready for this weekend. Perhaps you have avoided all forms of food and were hitting the gym like it was your second job. Maybe, you followed one of those cleanse diets that had you drinking a variety of green concoctions and eating only raw foods. Or, you did a low carb diet that had you clinging to the fridge every evening basking in the glow of the warm light that was providing neither warmth nor comfort for that craving that you just couldn’t seem to get rid off. Maybe you have tried all three, all of which sound terrible to me but I’ve totally done each of them before so I’m not going to judge.

On the other hand, maybe you have just been super mindful and wanted to enter this next season with balance and intention. However you are approaching his weekend, I just want to start out by saying, good for you for going after what you want!! No matter what your goal is, sticking to it and being committed is a huge achievement in itself and you deserve a pat on the back and some celebration. Now let’s not let this one little weekend derail all your hard work.

Even the most disciplined person can find weekends like these difficult to navigate between the celebrations with family and friends and the endless choices of food and drinks. It all adds up very quickly. None of us want to walk away from this amazing time feeling like crap nor do we want to feel limited and tied down by some diet or restrictions. So here are some easy things you can do this weekend to enjoy every moment, let go of whatever you have been tieing yourself to and walk away feeling light, happy and fulfilled in your mind, body and soul.

1. Hydrate…

Okay, duh! No brainer, right? We have been hearing this relentlessly for years now. But what exactly is that suppose to look like? Most of the time we don’t even realize we are thirsty until we are already dehydrated and often we mistake that feeling for hunger. Ultimately over-eating, when all we really needed was a glass of water. So start your day off right. Not with coffee, not with a beer to quell that hangover. Grab yourself a huge cup of warm water with lemon and then chase it down with another glass of fresh water. Then fill your belly with something light and hydrating for breakfast like fresh fruit or a green smoothie, preferably with a coconut water or water base. Once you have your foundation all you have to do the rest of the day is maintain it. Opt for hydrating foods first before you bite into that loaded burger or dig into that big bowl of chips and salsa. Salads and raw veggies are great options. Listen to your body and see what is wants before you put more in it. You may notice that you don’t eat as much as you though you would, which will be awesome when you step on the scale and you wont end up with a mouth that feels like the Sarahara dessert the next morning. Nor will you have the bloating and mood swings that comes with being dehydrated.

2. Exercise

Start each day with some form of exercise. It doesn’t have to be hard or long just do something, a walk, jog, yoga every morning for at least 20 minutes. Get your body moving right away to help clear out everything in your system from the day/night before and start up your metabolism.

3. Bring Something

Bring a dish to each party that you got to. Bring something that you would enjoy and will feel good about indulging in. Bring something even if the host/hostess says they are all set, unless you know it’s a formal meal. This is good for two reasons. First, you have an option that you can choose and you will not feel guilty about eating later. Second, maybe you will be introducing someone to something they never knew they liked and you can bring some insight and lightness into someone else life.

4. Go for the Veggies First

No matter where you are or what they are serving eat some vegetables first. Have a small salad or some raw, cooked or grilled veggies. Fill your plate with some type of plant based food, even if it’s not ideal…. did someone say ice burg lettuce? Get some neutralizing and hydrating food in your body first and it will reward you later with easier digestion, less bloating and a smaller waist line. I have even opted to eat the green garnish off the plate before I have had my meal but more often then not there is always some form of veggie available or that can be modified.

5. Limit Alcohol Consumption

I know this is a bit ridiculous. What is a holiday weekend with out alcohol? I am not suggesting that you avoid it all together. I am not even suggesting that you don’t get tipsy. I am suggesting that you don’t get hammered. So go have few drinks, but try to opt for the lower calorie versions and be sure to have a glass of water on hand at all times. A glass of water that you are actually drinking of course. The rule of thumb is one glass of water for each alcoholic drink you have. Also make your own drinks, this will help you control that amount of extra stuff that goes into it and intern the number of calories that you consume.

So go have a blast, let your hair down! Enjoy the warm weather, good food and time with friends and family. And of course please take a few moments to just remember and be grateful for those who gave their life so that we could have this opportunity each year.

Health, Love & Peace

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