It’s the last Tuesday before many of us get to enjoy a long holiday weekend for Memorial Day. This week I’m flashing back to a post I wrote early in my blog – five years ago to be precise! I hope you have a happy, healthy Memorial Day!
Memorial Day Weekend: a time to honor those who lost their lives in service of our country, a time to relax over a three-day weekend, a time to … eat until you’re overstuffed, drink a lot of beer, and lay around all weekend? No way, you’re not going to get off that easily! I’m all about taking a weekend to enjoy yourself, indulge, and relax, but I have 7 tips to make your Memorial Day Weekend healthier … while still enjoying yourself and not feeling deprived, of course.
Here are my top 7 tips for a healthier Memorial Day Weekend:
- Drink a lot of water. Yes, I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again! Aside from all the health benefits, water is a great way to fill yourself up, reduce cravings and unnecessary snacking, and stay hydrated. Try alternating water with your alcoholic beverages, or do like I do and always have a glass of water alongside any other drinks.
- Get in your workout in the morning. Grab a friend or family member, and get outside to enjoy the (hopefully) nice weather with a walk, run, or bike ride. With so many parties, barbeques, and opportunities for relaxation, it always becomes harder to get in your workout later in the day, so commit to working out in the morning. You won’t regret it, and you’ll feel better about indulging later in the day!
- Sneak in your veggies to fill you up and give your body the nutrients it’s craving. Heading to a friend’s barbecue? The sides at traditional barbecues tend to be very heavy (like potato salad, macaroni salad, or coleslaw). So why not bring over a veggie tray with some hummus or a green salad with fresh veggies? Celebrating at home? Throw some veggies on the grill – grilled vegetables are so delicious (just a bit of olive oil + salt/ pepper/ any spices and herbs you choose).
- Choose leaner meats if you’re grilling. Go for the chicken, fish, lean steak, or veggie burger instead of the ribs, hot dogs, or bratwurst.
- Limit your sweetened drinks. Lemonade, juice, frozen margaritas and daiquiris all scream summer, but they also pack lots of extra sugar and calories if you consume too much. So opt for lighter drink options, or limit yourself to one of the sweeter ones and really savor it!
- Eat mindfully. It can be very easy to put back a basket of chips or a half-dozen cookies without realizing it, so make sure you actually put your food on a plate (studies show this slows you down and limits portion sizes), and really enjoy it as you’re eating it!
- Opt for a healthier dessert. Like the sweetened drinks, all the baked goods can really add up, so choose one of healthy dessert recipes in the roundup below, or enjoy some fresh watermelon or cherries. For a special treat, grill some pineapple – delicious!
New for 2018: A Healthy Recipe Roundup
- Appetizers & Side Dishes
- Grilled Eggplant Salad from Bobby Flay
- Smoked Potato Salad from Cooking Light (note: I would omit the brown sugar, or substitute honey)
- Watermelon Salad from AllRecipes.com
- Grilled Zucchini Rolls with Herbs & Cheese from Ellie Krieger
- Grilled Prosciutto Wrapped Asparagus from Get Inspired Every Day
- Main Courses
- Baja Style Rosemary Chicken Skewers from FoodAndWine.com
- Lemon Butter Grilled Lobster Tails from What Grandma Ate
- BBQ Cauliflower Steak with Chimichurri from Every Last Bite
- Ham and Pineapple Skewers from Paleo Leap
- Burger with Caramelized Balsamic Onions and Avocado from Joyful Healthy Eats
- Coconut Almond Butter Truffles from Running to the Kitchen
- Flourless Cashew Cookies from Paleo Kitchen Lab
- Gluten Free Oatmeal Cookies (Amazon link – premade dessert!)
- Collagen Chocolate Chip Cookies from Juli at PaleOMG
Now it’s your turn… what recipes are you looking forward to trying this weekend?
Thanks a lot, Megan!
So simple and easy to follow, yet these tips are indeed the cornerstone of a healthier lifestyle.
Here’s another super-easy and enjoyable thing to do for improved health and wellbeing: sensible sun exposure. Sunlight is essential for vitamin D production, sparks up our mood, and so much more.
Of course, everyone should play it smart and avoid sunburns. 15-30 mins daily on the hot summer sun are all you need to reap the amazing benefits.
Thanks again and keep it up!