Finding a Healthy Balance

Ok, I get it. You’ve trained hard all through the winter months to have the body you’ve wanted for the summer months and you feel it’s time to relax a bit and enjoy the fruits of your labors.

Finding a healthy balance between socializing and trainingI completely agree, but at what cost?

Are you prepared to let all that hard work go to waste in a few short weeks just so you can fulfill your social obligations? Everyone loves spending time with friends and family during the summer months, whether it’s at the beach, a barbeque, sitting on the patio or at a friend’s wedding. With these social events comes temptation. The food, the drinks and the partying late into the night causes you to feel less than motivated to hit the gym the next day.

As the good weather rolls in and the opportunities to let loose and have fun become more and more available, don’t let yourself go too much. You owe it to yourself to stay in shape and enjoy the ripped abs you see in the mirror all summer long. Here are some tips for you so that you can still live it up without having to worry about losing the physique you’ve worked so hard for.

Tip #1:  Bring Food with You

If you’re heading to a BBQ, chances are there will be lots of hot dogs, hamburgers, sausages, steaks etc. But what you probably won’t find is extra lean cuts of meat, turkey or chicken and grilled vegetables. So, if you are being calorie conscious, bring some food like this with you to ensure you can eat along with everyone else without worrying about the extra cardio you’ll have to do afterwards.

Tip #2: Drinks

Water, water and water! Stay hydrated, avoid heavy-calorie-based drinks. Alcohol is your nemesis when trying to look your best and those fruity tasting drinks are full of sugars. Stick with water, maybe even a diet coke, but avoid the other drinks that are usually available.

Tip #3: Timing

As mentioned earlier, the food on the grill at summer parties isn’t always what you should be looking for. However, if you want to eat those delicious looking juicy burgers, then time it right. If you want to have your food on a bun, try to get your workout in before you go. Your body needs the additional calories at that point, so it won’t set you back too much. Or use the patio party as your scheduled cheat meal or cheat day. That way it’s a part of your program and you’ll suffer no guilt afterwards.

Tip #4: Call it a Night

If you have a planned training session the next day, you want to be fresh enough to put out the intensity needed for each workout. Plan to leave the party at a certain time, or at least make sure you are giving yourself enough rest before training the next day. Leaving early when everyone else is getting “sloppy” anyway may not be a bad idea.

Tip #5: Get Active

If you’re at a party in someone’s backyard and they have some games going on, like volleyball, or football or whatever, get involved! You’ll be burning calories while having fun and joining in with what everyone else is doing.

Tip #6: Set up your Week

If you know ahead of time you’ve been invited to a summer party, plan your week so that the party falls on an off day or the day after is your off day. That way you can enjoy yourself without having to think about your training.

Tip #7: No Thank You, I’m in Training

Just because you’re in training doesn’t mean you have to skip out on these fun social events. Once explained, most people respect what you’re doing and don’t harass you about not having a beer or hotdog.

Tip #8: Host your own Party

If you have the resources, have the party at your place. You can put out food and drink more suitable to your needs along with all the other things you find at summer parties. This way, you don’t have to feel different about drinking water, or having a protein smoothie because it’s there and available to everyone.

Tip #9:  Social Circle with Same Physique Goals

Chances are many of the people you keep company with are gym-goers as well. This helps because they just understand and get what it takes to maintain a certain physique. There will be no questions about what you’re doing and lots of support. It does make it easier when you’re training for a show to be around those who just get it.

Tip #10: Supplements

Take some ALLMAX Caffeine tablets to give you some energy for the party if it’s later in the evening. Load up with ALLMAX Arginine to help you get a good pump before taking your shirt off to get in the pool. If you’ve partied hard, take some ALLMAX Glutamine before going to bed to help boost your immune system.

Without a doubt, the summer is a great time to enjoy time with friends and family. There’s no need to let everything you’ve worked so hard for go to waste because you’re not sure how to keep a healthy balance between training and socializing. By following these tips, you’ll have a great, guilt-free summer, while keeping your hard-earned physique.

See you at the grill!

Dana Bushell

As a former provincial level bodybuilding competitor, and as a strength and conditioning coach, Dana has the advantage of being up to date with the current training and dieting practices used by the industry’s athletes. Along with being an Associate Professor of Communications, Dana is also a certified fitness consultant and a regular columnist for Muscle Insider.

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