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DAY 6 DIARY - Navigating Special Occasions

Well done everyone if you’ve been reading my blog posts every day, I really appreciate it – there’s nothing more depressing than writing something you think is pithy and insightful to have no one read it!! I originally wrote this post about navigating Easter weekend temptations but it applies equally well to any celebration ...

It’s the weekend, and not just any old weekend, it’s Easter weekend! After Christmas, Easter is probably the time of year most fraught with temptation; chocolate abounds, hot cross buns spill from every cupboard and tables around the land are quaking with the weight of Easter feasts (quick aside, I’ve noticed on Insta that everyone has gone a bit Easter crazy this year, when did Good Friday dinners become a thing?)

So, in the face of all this gustatory indulgence what do we do when we’ve just embarked on the ‘journey’ that is Stealth Health (I say that with my tongue firmly placed in my cheek)? How do we navigate the choppy waters of temptation? Well, to park the sailing metaphor for a moment, it’s actually a brilliant opportunity to practice Eating with Awareness at the sharp end.

To give you a bit of a helping hand here are some of the strategies I will be employing so I can enjoy the weekend without scuppering my health and weight loss aspirations:

1. There’s no need to abstain. This is really important because there’s nothing more depressing that being surrounded by things you think you can’t eat. The trick is to make a decision in advance about what you are going to eat and stick with it. For example, I have bought a pack of those mini M&S hot cross buns (they are my fave) and I'm going to have 2 or 3 or those (100 cals each - result!). I will probably also have a bit of choc on Sunday, I'm not a big chocolate fan, more of a cheese girl, but even if you are just keep an eye on it. I reckon that will all add up to an extra 500 cals – nothing to get too worried about even if you are trying to shed a few kgs.

2. If you are having a big dinner adjust the other meals. If you are having a roast dinner on Easter Sunday (another trend I have picked up from the social) not a problem, go large on the veg and a bit lighter on the roasties and meat. By the way, gravy can be very calorific so that’s something to watch. That dinner is going to be taking up most of your food spend for the day so go really light on breakfast and supper.

3. Alcohol is a biggie. I am a big spritzer fan – half white or rosé wine, half fizzy water with a slice of lemon. Although diet fizzy drinks are not exactly healthy (but I must fess up to the odd Diet Coke) if you are in damage limitation mode slimline tonic is your friend!

4. Be strategic. Look at the foods on offer and be selective. Eat those ones you really love, don’t waste calories on things you aren’t fussed about. It’s really easy to mindlessly snack on things that aren’t sparking joy (sorry I couldn't resist).

I’m aware that there’s nothing I’ve said here that is particularly ground-breaking, it’s just a reminder that you are in control of your choices. You can totally eat the Easter treats you love in the context of balance overall. It’s very important not to get in to a diet mentality of deprivation, we’re not aiming for slimmer of the year here, we’re just trying to develop better habits around food. This weekend is the ideal time to practice.

I’d love to know what you are cooking this Easter Weekend so drop me a comment below if you have a great recipe you'd like to share (I do read them all) and please tell all your friends about Stealth Health, I’d love to get more people on board ( sorry, couldn’t resist that boat metaphor again, it’s a journalist thing!).

Sam xx

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