Ever feel like your weight loss goals and your social life are never on the same page? I can understand! And that’s exactly why I am here with you today. Here’s exactly how to lose weight with a busy social life!
A busy social life tends to be filled with tons of great opportunities and memories. However, they can also be filled with food, alcohol, and a little less portion control too! The opportunities of a busy social life are numerous. Overall, they are a great way to really help you enjoy meeting new people, traveling new places, and networking.
Although the change in environments can fun, they more than likely don’t involve you as the one going grocery shopping or preparing these foods and drinks. This can be exactly what makes social life so much fun; however, without a strong foundation of understanding your body’s needs, it can be easy to fall off the wagon with your weight loss goals!
So how do you lose weight with a busy social life?
Never "save" calories by skipping meals before
Ah, the age old adage of “saving calories for tonight”. How many times have you heard this or even participated in it yourself? I know firsthand the allure of feeling like we can save up our calories throughout the day by skipping meals in order to fully enjoy the night or event that is happening later. But at what cost will skipping meals be to your overall weight loss goals?
By skipping meals in order to “save” calories for later, we actually put ourselves at a higher risk of overeating and indulging than if we would have just eaten normally throughout the day! When we restrict our bodies from calories to “save up” for the events coming later, we tend to send our bodies into overdrive or “survival” mode. What this means is that our hunger and fullness cues don’t fire as accurately through our bodies from our gut to our brain.
When this happens, we may find ourselves unable to moderate how much we are eating or how full we actually are! This is due to our body’s natural ability to promote our body to act for survival. So when you feel like your portion control is uncontrollable or you end up eating way more in one event than you would have originally all day, remember that you are not a failure! Your body is simply built for survival, but understanding this can help you to be proactive to respond better in the future.
In addition, saving up calories for later tends to set us up for the not so great feelings that come with overeating or eating “bad” foods. Those feelings of guilt, frustration, depression, and even the uncomfortable fullness and nausea can be overwhelming! Though these feelings are temporary, they can steer you off track and encourage you to actually lose motivation and willpower by making you feel like you can’t get right back on track again. That’s why my first tip is to “save yourself” by not “saving calories for later”! This is the first key on how to lose weight with a busy social life.
Take the time to connect and share
More than likely, the time you spend being a social butterfly involves sharing and connecting with other people. The best part about sharing and connecting is that they are also transferrable to how you should approach weight loss with a busy social life!
If you think about approaching weight loss similar to how you approach networking, you may realize that you can rely on their similarities to help you. You may know that the best social networking happens when you take the time and share common things with another person. Why should your approach to weight loss in social situations be any different?
By taking your time to connect and share things, you are more likely to listen to your hunger and fullness cues and be more mindful about your portion sizes. By being mindful to connect with your current environment and the people around you, you will be able to stay more in tune with your body too. Believe it or not, humans love to mimic each other. When eating or drinking around others, you are actually more likely to eat or drink the same amount as the people you are with! Sound familiar?
Regardless, your busy social life is all about connection and sharing the opportunities that tend to create memories. By taking the time to savor and enjoy the moment (which probably involves food too!), you can be more confident in staying on track with your weight loss goals. Why? Because we can also encourage the practice of saving your food and taking your time literally to be more mindful of how fast you are eating!
In social situations, this a great reminder that you want to savor your food as much as you are savoring the conversation around you as well. By taking your time, you tend to also give your gut to brain connection the time to catch up with your hunger and fullness cues too. And by sharing sides or food with others? You tend to be more likely to eat just enough to be satisfied without feeling like you must be a clean plater or end up wasting food.
Ultimately, remember that your busy social life is there to encourage connection. Take your time and share People who have more in common tend to have better relationships too. You may find that by just slowing down and being more mindful, you can build a deeper connection with your body and your peers without the stress of your weight loss goals hovering over you.
Check In with Your Hunger & Fullness Cues
When living a busy social life, you are more than likely going to lose track of time once or twice. By checking in with yourself throughout social events, you can establish a good routine based on your body’s typical hunger and fullness cues during social events. What this means is pace yourself while eating! Learning to check in with your body and your hunger or fullness cues as you enjoy the activities that come with events can help you to encourage healthier portion sizes in moderation.
The best way to check in with yourself is to take one portion at a time and only aim to be 80% full. Why? Because it can take 15-20 minutes for you to recognize when you are actually full! This is the gut to brain concept I mentioned earlier that takes a little bit of time to communicate. Even though you may think you know how hungry (or hangry!) you are, remember that your body’s needs change each day! By allowing your body the amount of time to not just eat and digest the food, but also to signal the brain that you have enough energy and nutrients for now, you are more than likely able to stay on track long term with your goals by preventing overeating.
Just like I mentioned above, overeating can lead to the ugly (but temporary) feelings and emotions that threaten to steer you off track from your weight loss goals. So remember, 80% is the best time to tap out!
Reflect on Your Weight Loss Goals
Lastly, checking in with yourself goes beyond how much food or alcohol you may or may not consume with social events. It’s a good practice to check in with your thoughts too! Being mindful about your actions in social situations can help you set yourself up for future success. By learning and being mindful of your current habits, you can make small changes to help you be even more successful in the future too!
Two easy ways to check in and be more mindful include: how much will you be moving around while you are out or at the event? How much water have you drank today? Just these two simple questions can help you be more mindful about how small actions can create big impact on your weight loss journey. Additionally, these two questions can impact your ability to recognize hunger and fullness levels and are directly tied to your energy levels as well.
Ditch the all or nothing approach
Weight loss is a JOURNEY. And having a busy social life shouldn’t limit you from reaching your goals! When taking action to reach your weight loss goals seem overwhelming, remember that the most impactful part of weight loss all comes down to your mindset. You don’t have to choose between achieving your weight loss goals and enjoying a busy social life! By ditching the all or nothing approach, you can adopt a growth mindset. A growth mindset allows you to see small opportunities for change… which snowballs into BIG impact!
When you follow an all or nothing approach because you are so determined to reach your weight loss goals, you tend to make unintentional sacrifices to stay on track. This could mean skipping social events or meals, ordering something different than everyone else or even trying to eat at a different place altogether. Alternatively, you may feel like you have to choose between being successful in your weight loss goals or being active in your social life. This can cause that rollercoaster of thoughts and feelings as you feel like you must abandon your weight loss goals to enjoy your social calendar… only to find yourself feeling frustrated you can’t have FUN if you want to lose weight!
Well I’m here to tell you that you CAN HAVE BOTH. What!? Crazy, right?! It’s true! And I’ll tell you that the first step to success is to take action. Because taking action is exactly how to lose weight with a busy social life!
The First (and Last) Step You'll Ever Need
I want you to know… I NEED you to know… that weight loss is simple. It truly is!
The complicated part? Old food rules, fad diets, and all the things telling you what you can’t have in order to lose weight. So how can we take action to still enjoy a busy social life WHILE losing weight?
In my nutrition coaching program, we work exclusively on behavior changes and a growth mindset so that you can easily fit weight loss into your busy social life and still. have. fun. Though knowledge and confidence are both factors in success, the most important part is ACTION. Now that you’ve learned how to lose weight with a busy social life, it’s now time for ACTION!
Taking action to learn how to make these changes could be exactly your missing key to success in maintaining your busy social life while achieving your weight loss goals! Want help? Apply for nutrition coaching here so we can connect and come up with a strategy!