Summer is a time for fine dining and relaxation, and when we come home from our holidays and jump the scales, we need to start dieting and exercising to get our figures back. Spending your days off enjoying the local cuisine and not gaining weight is possible if you know how to do it wisely. Don’t overwork your body when you get home, made even harder when going back to work. Grab a pencil and paper and pay attention because here are ten simple steps to keep your figure this summer.
1. Eating healthy and fresh foods
Being on holiday does not mean you can eat all you want or snack on fatty foods. Try to eat healthy, light products. Andalusia is a very good region for this purpose because it has a natural and healthy Mediterranean diet. In addition to the freshness of the products in this region, the restaurants and bars offer typical, very healthy dishes. One example is Andalusian gazpacho (with a tomato and cucumber base) or fish. Also, if you do overdo it with the food, you always have the option of going for a walk to burn off those calories while enjoying every corner of Andalusia.
2. Eat five meals a day – don’t skip any
Days off are always different but they don’t mean you have to change your dietary habits. Nutritionists recommend five meals a day and you can keep this up even if you are away from home. If you travel to a beach destination, such as the Costa del Sol or the Costa de la Luz, there is always a beach bar or beach club nearby where you can stop to cool down and have a snack.
3. Do not eat everything you fancy
When you go to a foreign destination, it’s not unusual to see things that don’t exist back at home and that you want to try. That is fine because you want to try the local cuisine, but don’t do everything in one day. If you’ve seen things you might fancy, divide them up into the days you’re on holiday. If you stuff yourself full, you can get fat with that attitude and that food might make you feel bad.
4. Look for healthier snacks
If it’s harder to control your eating habits while you’re away, at least try to look for things that are healthy. Carrot sticks or fruit skewers are very good options. They can both be kept fresh in the special bags these products are sold in in supermarkets. Oranges are another option which satisfy your hunger and sweet tooth between meals and which you can keep without going off.
5. Control yourself at the buffet
If you travel, be very careful with free buffets because you don’t realize what you’re eating and you may end up unable to move. It is always better to choose the dishes you are going to eat before going into any restaurant and especially at buffets. Don’t sit at a table near where the food is; this helps avoid the temptation to get up for food every five minutes. Come on! You can do it!
6. Drink plenty of fluids
If you are travelling to a destination where there are high temperatures, it is very important not to forget to drink fluids frequently. Don’t forget you have to drink two and a half litres of fluids every day which doesn’t have to be water. Iced teas, sugar-free drinks, soft drinks... there are lots of options. Also, if you go to the south of Spain, you can often find fountains where you can drink water and keep cool at the same time.
7. Look for an alternative to ice cream
The quintessential summer sweet is ice-cream but it contains a huge amount of calories. This can lead to us being four or five kilos heavier when we get home. There’s no need to give it up (they make diet ice-cream now too!) but you can alternate it with chilled natural juices or slushies which are lighter and equally cool.
Days off are not necessarily synonymous with days on the sun lounger. We strongly recommended that you keep up your physical exercise on holiday. If you go to the beach, it’s easy. As well as swimming, you can walk along the sand which burns twice as many calories as if you do it on the pavement, and also helps improve circulation. Strolls through the cities are highly desirable, and the hiking and biking trails which are available throughout Andalusia are perfect for staying in touch with nature and help keep you fit.
9. Don’t drink too much alcohol
It is true that we like to have fun on holiday but we don’t need to be drunk to do so. Alcohol consumption must be kept under control, as it is not only detrimental to your health but also contains a huge amount of calories. Take advantage of cocktails, prepared in some beach clubs, and beer as they are less harmful than other alcoholic beverages.
10. Eat slowly
Never forget that we’re on holiday and that means that we have to leave stress and anxiety behind. Don’t sit down in front of a plate and eat it all in two minutes. Slow down, chew, savour it and take your time. Mediterranean cuisine is one of the best in the world; take your time and enjoy it. Eating food quickly causes heartburn and doubles the rate at which you get fat. Let your body digest at its own pace; don’t force it.
If you follow these ten simple tips, when you get home, you won’t be afraid of the scales! Combine these tips and enjoy the local food when you’re on holiday without having to go on a diet as soon as you get back.
If you want to discover Andalucia, make sure you stay at the best hotels. The most effective option is certainly Fuerte Hoteles. The chain has branches where you can enjoy the best of each area throughout Andalusia, in addition to its services. It boasts over 60 years of experience and gives you the time to discover the essence and heritage of the area. Marbella, Conil, Grazalema, El Rompido and Torrox are some sites where you can find these amazing hotels which also have their own restaurants with healthy, local food.