How To Survive The Silly Season And Keep Your Waist!

By Wes Brinckley, personal trainer and health and fitness expert

It’s leading up to that time of year again – social events corporate functions, and summer fun! These things come hand-in-hand with excessive alcohol and junk food, and it seems there’s something on every week. You might get away with an occasional splurge, but with increased frequency means dreaded weight gain for sure. You don’t have to (and often can’t) hide from these events – but you can be smart about it. Here are my top tips to avoid a blow-out and keep that spare tyre off your waist:

  • Drink soda water & lime

With almost nil calories it’s a saintly drink, will keep you hydrated, and also sober. It also looks like a vodka lime & soda, which deflects a lot of the “why aren’t you drinking?” questions. You can alternate them with actual vodka lime & sodas if you do want an alcoholic drink, which is the best option calorie-wise.

  •  Wine spritzers (half wine, half soda & ice)

For the vino fans – don’t knock it til you try it! For the same reason as before: half the calories, half the alcohol, more hydration during the hotter months and surprisingly refreshing. Why are we trying to reduce the alcohol content? Well alcohol itself is like rocket fuel in terms of calories, then you add in the sugar from the wine – plus when was the last time you made a good food choice whilst drunk?

  •  NO canapés

Yes, you will find healthy canapés from time to time, but they generally appear at a ratio of 10 (unhealthy) to 1 (healthy) at any given party. When presented with an array of food options for 2 seconds at a time, it’s way too complicated to try and make good choices, whilst holding a conversation and balancing a drink. Eat beforehand so that you’re not hungry, then pop a mint in your mouth at the party so that you’re not tempted to snack.

  • Load up on salad

In a situation such as a barbecue or buffet where you can help yourself, and everyone’s loading up on food – trick your brain by filling up all the spare spaces on your plate with lots of fresh vegies. You’ll feel full as it will take you some time to get through it all, appear to be eating a decent amount, and get your nutrients in to boot.

  • Coffee instead of dessert

If you just feel that you need that extra little bit of sweetness or just “something” to finish off a meal – go for a coffee or tea instead. It will satisfy your craving, and even just a teaspoon of sugar is miles better than a rich dessert.


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