Welcome to day 13!
Today I want to talk to you about how to survive the weekend and manage weekend overeating if this is something that you struggle with.
For most people, they make it Monday through Friday with everything on track, but then once the clock strikes 5 P.M. it’s like a full moon has come out and they transform into some insatiable cookie monster that looks for sugary food and bad decisions to sink its teeth into.
Sometimes it slowly creeps up on you, almost unnoticeable, while other times it’s like the start of a race where you rush to see how much you can eat before Monday morning rolls around again.
In Sleekgeek’s Coaching Program we call this “Weekenditis“ we have identified 4 main causes along with some great suggestions on how you can deal with it.
OK, so reason number 1 for weekenditis: TRYING TO BE PERFECT.
Most of us like rules and guidelines because they help us feel more in control and on track. Often times the stricter the better, especially if we don’t trust ourselves or aren’t confident in our abilities. The problem with this is eventually we crack or slip up – and the weekend is usually a pretty convenient time for that.
We often start hectic diets or workout plans when life is going perfectly (or at least well enough), but at soon as things get complicated or messy we can no longer keep up and everything falls apart. This is why trying to be perfect isn’t a great strategy for surviving the weekend.
So what’s the solution? Aim for progress, not perfection.
The perfect diet or most effective workout plan is useless if you can’t stick to it. The “decent” plan that you follow is better than the “perfect” plan that you quit.
That’s why keeping things simple and do-able is a winning strategy, especially when it comes to the weekend where you likely have less routine and structure.
If your weekend is usually a mess when it comes to eating or exercising, rather looking at how you can overhaul your whole lifestyle to create the perfect healthy weekend, look and see how you can make it just a teeny tiny bit better. And then work on making progress on that plan every week.
Reason number 2 for weekenditis: HAVING AN ALL-OR-NOTHING RATHER THAN ALL OR SOMETHING MINDSET
Many people think that in order for a diet or exercise plan to work, it needs to be followed perfectly. For example, you have to eat this exact meal in this exact amount at this exact time or there’s no point in even trying at all, anything less than that is useless.
But this is not true at all.
Health and fitness is not a binary on or off switch like a light bulb. It’s more of a best effort kind of thing where your efforts and results can come in all shapes and sizes. Maybe some weeks you make a bit more progress than others, but even the smallest amount of effort leading to the smallest amount of progress is still progress and it’s still moving you forwards.
All-or-nothing thinking gives you two options: Perfect or crap, with the later being more likely over the long-term.
So what’s the solution? Operate along a spectrum of possible options.
If you got one flat tyre, you wouldn’t get out and go slash the other 3 would you? No, you would pop a spare tyre on and keep going. So do that with your health and fitness too!
Rather than only focusing on “perfect” meals or workouts, just do your best with what you’ve got. If something doesn’t go according to plan, just deal with it and then get right back on track.
When faced with a problem, think in terms of “pretty good” or “not too bad” options. Find the best choices that you can make with your current abilities and challenges so that you can keep the momentum going rather than starting again from scratch.
Instead of slashing your three remaining tyres, pull out the spare. It’s not perfect, but at least you can still get to your destination!
Reason number 3 for weekenditis: TRADING GOOD BEHAVIOUR FOR BAD BEHAVIOUR
This one is pretty simple, it’s kind of like being in prison or being 5 years old: If you are a good you get time off your sentence or nice sweeties as a reward.
So, when it comes to health and fitness, you were “good” all week, and now you give yourself permission to be “bad” on the weekends. You feel that the world owes you something and that you deserve a reward for your efforts.
Funnily enough, this is actually the most common after you experience a bit of success. For example, you lose 2 kilograms and then “ease up” a bit or “treat yourself”.
So what’s the solution? Grow up!
Trading off “good” and “bad” is for convicts and little kiddies! How about you just “do your time” or act like a grown up instead?
Come back to me in 5-10 years of good behaviour time when you have undone the past 5-10 years of bad behaviour and your reward will be a rocking new body with incredible health.
The world owes you nothing and you owe yourself everything. You need to take complete responsibility for your actions (both good and bad).
If you really feel the need to reward yourself, then do it with non-food rewards, and if you experience even the slightest bit of success then use that to fuel your motivation to work even harder!
Reason number 4 for weekenditis: RATIONALISING WITH YOURSELF.
During the week we tend to have a familiar and comfortable routine. There are less unexpected surprises and we have to make less hard decisions. However, weekends present all sorts of opportunities for justifying eating junk or skipping workouts. It doesn’t matter whether they are valid reasons or not, we find a way to justify them.
Maybe we ate badly because we were busy. Or we ate badly because we had such a lazy day with nothing going on.
Maybe we didn’t get a workout in because we were traveling. Or we didn’t get a workout in because we were stuck at home.
Maybe we had family time or social meals. Or maybe we ate all by our poor lonely selves.
It doesn’t matter what it is. Any excuse will do. Poor you! Victim of circumstance!
When you get into the habit of rationalising all of the time you tend to not even try at all or you give up at the slightest sign of resistance. This is a dangerous and slippery slope.
So what’s the solution? Notice (and challenge) the stories you’re telling yourself.
We have all of these convenient scripts that we follow that help us rationalise bad behaviour or why we aren’t successful. Most of the time we don’t even notice them.
The thing is, there are people out there who are busy, or bored, or traveling, or confined to their home, or big on family and socialising, or terribly lonely who ARE still able to eat good food and get in regular workouts with ease.
These people just have different “stories” about themselves. They don’t think about good or bad luck, good or bad genetics, good or bad finances, good or bad circumstances. Instead, they focus on being resourceful, on problem solving, and on being fully responsible for their own lives.
It’s kind of like being an optimist versus a pessimist. Optimists will look at any given situation and see all things that can go right, while pessimists will look at the same situation and only see all the things that can go bad.
As they say: “Life is not about waiting for the storm to pass… It’s about learning how to dance in the rain.“
So for today, all I want you to take serious stock of your weekend behaviour.
Do you recognise any symptoms of weekenditis? Do any of these causes strike a nerve? Even if you are pretty good on the weekend, try to identify at least one of these solutions that you can implement and work on in your life going forwards.
And because I know how weekend are… I suggest that you actually set a weekly reminder on your phone to automatically go off each weekend with a small reminder or cue on what you should be focusing on to win the weekend.
See you tomorrow! Cheers.