One of the perks of many corporate jobs – client entertaining at some of the best sporting, cultural and lifestyle events in the world. Another bonus – the luxuries of hospitality. With Rugby season now in full flow you can find yourself with a potential onslaught of days and nights out, I thought I would share my top tips on how to navigate these events for fat loss and stay on track as much as possible (whilst still enjoying them of course). So whether it is the racing, rugby, football, tennis, F1 – whatever, have a read and make it work for you.
If you have a meet later in the day and it is feasible, just skip breakfast – it really isn’t the most important meal of the day. If you don’t want to skip it completely, grab a low calorie protein shake or coffee instead. It is actually really easy to keep hunger at bay if you don’t open your ‘feeding window’ and you can save more calories for later in the day when there is no doubt they will be needed! I find sipping hot drinks such as americanos, espressos or teas help to quell hunger.
Get in a gym sesh
If you have time first thing – ensure you get in a high energy gym session to earn yourself some extra calories to play with for the day – a 20 minute high energy session is all you need. If you have 30 minutes – jump on the treadmill or cross trainer, whack a netflix episode or pull up a client presentation you need to brush up on and get a sweat on. If the morning isn’t feasible – consider one the next day.
This is one of the best tactics out there and one certainly I and many of my clients wouldn’t survive without – it allows you to still do the things you love and enjoy the foods you like whilst still hitting your goals. Essentially, instead of thinking of your calories as a daily target, think of them as a weekly one – a budget if you like. Spend that budget as and when it works for you as long as you come out on point at the end of the week. The simplest way to do this is track your calories and save up on days you can to then spend more on the days it is needed. This requires some discipline on your quieter days but i find it totally worth it to enjoy the event days.
Take a snack
Whilst sometimes extra food may not be needed especially if the booze is flowing and the food is on tap, sometimes it can be a good idea to have a snack with you that can help you get closer to your macros for the day. I always find protein relatively hard to come by in the quantities I need it at this type of thing, especially as the booze (carbs) tips the balance. I therefore always have a couple of protein bars on hand to have if needed or as an alternative to additional snacks throughout the day.
Absolutely enjoy some drinks, after all, you have extra calories to play with now after skipping breakfast and getting that gym session in. However, making some informed decisions is key and some small swaps and substitutes can make all the difference. Beer & wine are going to eat through your calories quickly (2o0kcal+), where as spirits and diet mixers make things more manageable (50-70kcals). Always opt for diet mixers where possible and don’t be afraid to make your own decisions and not just jump on the round. Champagne is a favourite at this type of event when the sun is out – as an average – a single glass sets you back around 95kcals.
As I said, sometimes hard to come by, but when it is available – get yourself some or even a double helping. It helps keep you fuller for longer and will help you track towards you protein target for the day. Supplement it if you need to or / and have a shake instead of breakfast.
Your nutrition decisions the next day are important, and we all know, when we are feeling ropey – they aren’t great. Make sure you keep hydrated throughout the day and that you have a couple of pints before bed in the evening – you will appreciate it the next day!
Most of all though…
…have fun! These events are always a brilliant day out and should be embraced. Try and stay on track if you can, but if not, don’t stress about it – just get back on the following day.