True that this is one small study. What I found interesting is that this approach never used to work for me. I'd splurge on the weekend, feel guilty, and then have a hard time getting back on the "diet" on Monday. This time has been different since I didn't "go on a diet" so I can have a more relaxed approach during the weekend since nothing is really off limits. I pay attention to what I eat even on the weekends for health reasons so I still don't go crazy for the most part. Weekdays are just easier because my life is more structured and I've got my exercise routine going.
I agree with many of the points made in the article ("got to be in it for the long term" "shouldn't get discouraged and quit just because you weighed a bit more after a weekend, that's natural!" and so on). But not exactly with how they've interpreted the findings into a "cause and effect" scenario - "be strict M-F, lax S-S, and this is the way to lose weight!" - because a) it was a very small sample (80 participants) and b) it was a very short study period, with some participants weighing-in daily for as little as only two weeks. Hard to make sweeping general statements about long-term success trends based on this one study.
I do agree that for many of us (me included), it is beneficial to take advantage of the more regimented/scheduled weekdays. Over the course of a year, I've noticed that if and when i go over my calorie range, it happens on the weekend - mostly because that's when i go visiting-friends or dining-out, and I refuse to sneak my food scale and measuring cups along, nor grill the host on how many teaspoons of oil were used to saute the mushrooms.... SO in order that I can just relax-a-little-already on the weekends, it is helpful for me to stick more strictly to my calorie range during the week. Also, I find that knowing i'll be able to have a nice Friday night restaurant dinner and even a glass of wine or two, will keep me from falling into the donut-box that is ever-present in the lunch room. The weekdays have offered me great opportunities for calorie-reduction, as I used to get a LOT of my daily calories from all the "free treats" that appear here.
Goal 1 - break 200 (46 pounds lost)**DONE** Goal 2 - leave obesity behind (BMI 29.9, at 185#) **DONE** Goal 3 - BMI = Normal (154# or less)
For me, it's more important for weight maintenance than weight loss. If I need to drop a few pounds, I need to be clean on my nutrition, around 90%. In order to maintain my bodyfat where it is now, I need to be clean about 80% of the time and then enjoy a little extra on the weekends. I try not to label food as "good" or "bad", and I love red wine and chocolate so I don't deny myself a few food related pleasures here and there, but only if I want it.
Fitness Minutes: (14,252)
9,661 2/11/14 11:36 A
I think this article misses the mark. What makes weight loss successful is a healthy lifestyle; aiming for not perfection, but overall trends. If you spend all week choosing the right stuff, it's easier to make healthy choices on the weekend. It's also about attitude. If you think, "I was good all week, so now I can have some fun" then you're more likely to sabotage y ourself.
The 80/20 rule works for me. I aim to eat well 80% of the time, and allow myself room to breathe and enjoy myself the rest of the time. That means I don't deny myself the things I love.
This is a lifestyle thing for me. I don't eat differently on the weekend than I do during the week.
Heather Writer, mother, wife, and breadwinner. I love to run, but running doesn't love me, so I'm switching to my low-impact bike.
I read this article yesterday and it spoke to me, since it's basically what I do. When I was losing weight I was still pretty careful on the weekend, but definitely less so than during the week. Now I don't so much eat more over the weekend (although sometimes I do), but will choose some foods that I don't normally eat. I also have wine on the weekend which I usually forego during the week.
Here's the link to the article: http://news.health.com/2014/02/07/want-to-keep-the-weight-off-weekday-meals-may-be-key/
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