Surviving the Rugby

My favourite thing to do in the in winter is relax on the couch watching Rugby with my friends and family! I am looking forward to watching the six nations in February! In years past, it would have been a great excuse for me to eat processed junk food: pizza, chips, dip, lemonade and desserts. In fact last year was the first year that I didn’t order a pizza for the rugby. It wasn’t an option as I was doing a 21 day detox, and you know what….I DIDN’T MISS IT!!!

Enjoy Parties without Sabotaging Your Results

If you are like most individuals right now, this is the time of year when you are focused on your health and fitness goals. You may have a vacation coming up, have set an intention that in 2016 you are going to put yourself first, or have a long-term goal to have the body and health that you want and deserve.

And then an event comes along like the Rugby… and you find yourself heading to a party or hosting guests. Parties and events are what can send us back to our old habits and move us away from our goals and desires.

Let’s face it: There is always a holiday, birthday, party, event, or social gathering that is happening. I challenge you to count in a month how many of these things are on your calendar. If you are going to be successful in achieving your health and fitness goals you MUST learn to navigate and handle these situations.

Don’t get me wrong; I am NOT saying that you need to be 100% consistent with clean eating at all times to achieve your goals. However, one of the MOST IMPORTANT things you can do to not sabotage all of your hard work and success is to pick and choose your indulgences. Ask yourself, “Is eating _________ worth it to me right now?” “Am I going to enjoy __________ without feeling guilty or wishing I hadn’t indulged because it just tasted ok?”

For me, going to a party and indulging in pizza that was ordered in from the local pizza place is VERY different from eating a slice of New York style pizza when visiting family in New York. The first is something you do for social reasons and to “let yourself go”; the second you do to experience the culture without overdoing it. If you are going to eat a food that is “less healthy” and moves you further away from your goals, and then don’t have any guilt doing it.

Tips to survive the party/sports event and keep moving closer to your goals:

• Skip the alcohol. The extra calories and sugar are not going to do your metabolism any favors. If you want to have a drink in your hand pour some kombucha or sparkling water in a wine glass.
• Focus on protein and fat first, carbohydrates second. If you are headed to a party, choose the foods that are high in protein and fat first then choose “smart carbs” like vegetables and fruits. Leave the processed high sugar carbs alone.
• Eat before you go. If you are following a more strict nutrition plan right now, you may just want to eat before you head out to the party. While at the party, you can focus on the people, the game, and the great commercials!
• Get in a quick workout to fire up your metabolism. Perform a HIIT workout before heading out or before your guests arrive.
• Get your mind right. Choose to focus on the social connection, the people you are surrounded by, and what you enjoy about an event like the rugby rather than letting food control your experience.
• Visualize your experience. Before an event or gathering take a few minutes to visualize the experience you want to have. Picture yourself in the situation, how do you feel? Most successful athletes visualize their performance in big games setting them up for success.

Game Day Recipes

To prepare for the “BIG GAME,” here are some grain-free, Paleo, and detox-friendly recipes. I haven’t quite figured out our menu for the rugby yet, but you can be sure it will include at least one of these recipes.

Avocado Chorizo Sweet Potato Skins

Marvelous Meatballs

Sweet Potato Bruschetta

Bean-less Chili

Green Sliders (Spinach, Mushroom, and Beef mini burgers)

Spinach, Bacon, Artichoke Dip

Paleo Spiced Nuts

Almond Coconut Veggie Dip

Enjoy!

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