Just got back from Las Vegas where you know VACATION WEIGHT GAIN is a given! It’s common for us ladies to go out of town with great intentions but still come home a little puffy. Not all of us but a good bit of us and I’m here to say it’s OK!!!! There are lots of reasons why we gain so I’ll give you tips on how to reduce vacation weight gain…or at least help you not let it bug the crap out of you when you get home.
By the way, my typical vacation weight gain is about 3-5lbs. Heck, a few years ago I gained 7lbs. on one trip to Vegas. My famous motto to my clients is, “what goes up fast comes off fast.” It’s the slow weight gain we all need to worry about!
Why We Have Vacation Weight Gain?
Before you go off the deep end after a week of Vegas, the beach, or on a corporate retreat, keep in mind that travel alone will cause you to have some water retention. Sitting in long car rides or travelling by plane will give you a bounce on the scale the very next day you return home. Also, when you are on vacation you typically eat a few things you normally don’t and drink a lot of things you do in moderation at home. Again, these things will bump some weight because you aren’t used to the sodium. If you are anything like me and eat pretty healthy at home, it doesn’t take many orders of french fries with some wine to gain a pound or two.
Most of us tend to relax on vacation, too. We don’t pound out workouts like we do at home although we might be active. Your body is used to being low on “fuel” and it thinks it just went to the gas station and topped off on vacation. You simply aren’t driving it much but you keep filling up the tank as if you were driving it all day.
This isn’t to say some some fat came along for the ride. I’m not going to tell you that eating and drinking all week doesn’t add some pounds, but for those of you who try to “do good” and still have a gain I don’t want you to go crazy with disappointment. I look at my weight gain as a challenge; an immediate hammer thrown down to see how fast I can get back to my healthy lifestyle.
Avoiding Vacation Weight Gain
Some people can avoid it all together but I’m here to tell you that when you vacation it should not be a big ole diet. When I go on vacation I like to be smart but have fun. I choose my fun and that makes me feel in control and never regretting a moment. Here’s my top two tips on vacation!
1. I’m active. I either get up early and run, walk, hit the hotel gym, or find a local facility but most days I try to do 30-60 minutes of activity. What I don’t do is walk in with a set exercise plan because I want to workout to how I feel each day. I just have a set time I’m moving and then I MOVE but it’s non-negotiable and usually really early so I don’t take away from family time if possible.
Often when I go out of town I like to just run all week. My husband and I do all kinds of running. At the beach we like to run to a parking lot, do 6-10 sprint intervals, and run back to the hotel. We have a mid-distance run in Vegas we do that is 2 miles to Ihop, breakfast, and 2 miles back to the hotel. And, other days we just say let’s run an hour up and down the strip but we sprint all the stairs. My FAVORITE is when we run over four miles to a local Whole Foods, shop for healthy eats, and then cab back to our hotel.
2. I make good choices. Each meal I try to have one thing I like and everything else is healthy or small amounts. Wine is a favorite of mine so I don’t eat fries when I have wine. If I’m not drinking I’m having grilled chicken with fries. In my mind I go into each meal with a trade-off system. I decide what do I really want and have just that one thing and sometimes I even skip it in that meal if I know I’ll want something better later. The key is to make each meal COUNT. I’m not having bread or bites of appetizers. Most of the time that stuff is just not worth it. If it goes in this mouth it is something I really want and that’s often FRIES!
My other food tactic is to make a menu ahead of time. I scout where we will eat on vacation and type up a menu for Chris. This is my approved list of meals. He orders for me each place so that I don’t have to make a choice and he gets to feel all sexy taking care of his lady!
The most important food tip is I never skip meals on vacation. If you ever see my bag it’s loaded with snacks and possible meals. I drink Shakeology so it’s EASY for me to get in a healthy lunch or breakfast. I even bring my magic bullet so Chris and I can blend up when needed. You don’t know how many nights I’ve been a little toasty after partying in Vegas and I’ve blended a Shakeology with some peanut butter. OMG it hits the spot and is a lifesaver over an emergency McDonald’s run at 2:30 am.
How To Erase the Vacation Weight Gain
We know to expect weight gain and we know we should have a good time but not a “throw my hands up I give up time” while on vacation. But what do we do with the vacation weight gain once we get home?
First, DON’T WEIGH. It doesn’t pay emotionally to hop on the scale when you get back. Why even put yourself through it? What if you did GREAT while out of town but you retain water from flying? Well, then you feel like crap and probably eat some, too.
I suggest you wait seven full days before you weigh. Give yourself a whole week of normal exercise, healthy foods, and water; THEN weigh. You will see if you have any weight you need to lose.
Next, get thee to the grocery store. I ALWAYS hit the store within 1-12 hours of coming home. In fact, this week I flew in at 3:30 pm, was at the store at 4:15 pm, and had our fridge stocked and loaded for a healthy week by 5:15 pm. My kid and husband both DESERVE to have fresh food and not a bunch of drive-thru because it’s EASY.
Drink ALL your water this week and I mean a gallon a day. Eat lots of fresh foods and be sure to stop when you feel satisfied. On the plane or ride home, look at your calendar and plug in your exercise for the week. I try to ALWAYS workout doing whatever I want the first morning I get home so that my routine is set. Honestly, it’s always the hardest workout because I average 3-4 hours of sleep on vacation. But as a former 250lbs woman I also know that I can’t give myself too many rest days or they turn into rest months.
For years I let vacations turn into 10 more pounds over the summer. It doesn’t have to be that way. Vacations are meant to be enjoyed so do that. Just keep in mind that when you get home it’s back to a healthy and active lifestyle. It really is as simple as that.