Summer is my favorite time of year! I love relaxing by the pool or beach and enjoying a few drinks on the weekend. Today I’m going to talk to you about how I manage to balance my adult beverages & “cheat meals” while trying to stay in shape.
First and foremost, let me premise this by saying that I eat nearly all of my meals at home 6 days a week. That way I know what I’m getting and am able to stay on track which helps me afford those “extra” calories on that seventh day. Second, on days that I’m planning on enjoying a few drinks, I start my day with a big and balanced breakfast followed by a 30-60 minute sweat sesh. My activities of choice are swimming, hiking and practicing my swing at the batting cages.
Between breakfast and my “cheat meal” I will sip on some BCAA’s and mix myself up a Level 1 protein shake to help keep my cravings at bay and keep me in fat burning mode as long as possible. Also I make sure to drink a ton of water to help keep me fuller and prepare my body for the impending dehydration. I cover this with the BCAA’s and protein but you can also reduce your daily carb intake to help create a calorie buffer. Last but not least don’t forget to track your intake in MyFitnessPal. This last step is probably the most important because when you write it down ahead of time, you’re twice as likely to stick to the plan.
When it comes to staying in shape, consistency and planning are your best friends. That being said, I still believe it is essential to enjoy one restaurant meal/cheat meal per week and in my case, that typically involves a drink (or two). You’re probably wondering,
What are the Best Drinks When Trying to Stay in Shape?
Alcohol is technically the 4th macronutrient. Your body essentially utilizes alcohol as fat so it’s best when consumed in moderation. Most bottled/pre-made beverages can be found in MyFitnessPal. It’s best to avoid mixed drinks with sugary garnishes, mixers and unknown ingredients as well as heavy beers. IPA’s for example can contain up to 300 calories (per 12 oz beer!). Champagne, Light Beer and my new obsession, spiked seltzer are all great options (in moderation that is).
I’ve recently tried the following 3 seltzers and here are my honest reviews:
Truly Spiked & Sparkling: 100 calories, 1 G carbs, 5% Alcohol
This one is by far my least favorite. The flavor is weak and there is no “fizz” to it. It does however contain the least calories and carbs though.
Indian River Spiked Seltzer: 140 calories, 5 G carbs, 6% alcohol
This brand has great flavor and just the right amount of fizz. Also, you get 6% alcohol so it gives you a little more bang for your buck (LOL). I love the grapefruit flavor – it’s very crisp and refreshing.
White Claw Hard Seltzer: 110 calories, 4 carbs, 5% alcohol
I’ve tried grapefruit, black cherry and raspberry and they are all really good. They have a great full bodied flavor with just the right amount of fizz. This brand is also second lowest in calories so that is a definite win in my book.
As I said before, you don’t have to give up your favorite foods and drinks to stay in shape, but it will require some additional planning and preparation. I challenge you to look up your favorite drinks in MyFitnessPal and count them in to your daily calorie budget. The results may just shock you!