When I have a client who is looking to improve their diet, one of the first steps I have them take is to complete a 5-day food journal. I do this because it gives me a fairly quick and accurate feel for someone’s nutritional habits.
The client is instructed to write down everything they eat and drink for 5 consecutive days, of which, a weekend must be included. By now, I have seen my fair share of 5-day food journals. As you might assume, some look really good, some really bad, but most reside somewhere in the middle of really good and bad.
Although these three different types of food journals vary greatly, they usually tend to have one thing in common… the weekend. Yes, there it is, the dreaded food journal killer – and the main reason behind this email.
Generally speaking, those of us who eat well most of the time, poor most of the time, or somewhere in the middle tend to let it slide during the weekend. “Letting it slide” is relative depending on the individual, but common issues are increased alcohol and junk food consumption, and just plain old overeating.
Now this may or may not be a problem. Take the individual who eats a sensible and healthy diet Monday – Friday, is happy with their overall state of health and fitness, and is making progress towards or has achieved their desired wellness related goals. Now let’s say they take the opportunity over the weekend to have a couple extra glasses of wine and perhaps a dessert. In this instance, I’m sure we can agree that it’s no big deal.
On the other hand, take the person who begins their weekend on Friday eating lunch out, followed by drinks and appetizers at the bar after work, and continues on this course right on through Sunday. Now if this pattern becomes routine, I’d imagine it has or will become problematic for most – at least pertaining to achieving or maintaining a desired state of health and fitness.
It might not seem like a lot at the time, but letting loose for 3 days in a row breaks down to 43% of the week. I’ve said it before and I’ll continue to keep saying it – I don’t care how often and how hard you exercise because you just can’t out-train a poor diet!
In keeping with the trend of introducing you to other professionals who can help take your health to another level, it is time to meet the folks over at Precision Nutrition. Precision Nutrition is a nutritional coaching and certification company. To date they have helped over 45,000 clients achieve their goals, and when it comes to true body transformation and behavioral change, no one is better.
As luck would have it, Krista Scott-Dixon of PN recently wrote an article, How I Quit Weekend Overeating – 5 strategies that helped me ditch the bingeing, guilt, and extra weight. If you think your weekend eating habits may be holding you back, Krista will provide you some food for thought (yes, pun intended).
Bottom line, if what you’re doing is working, keep doing it. If not, take an honest look at your weekend eating habits and ask yourself if they might be preventing you from getting to where you want to go.
I know what you’re thinking, “Does the trainer let it slide during the weekend too?” I most certainly do.