Are Your Weekends Making You Fat?
Are your weekends making you fat? There’s a good chance of it…
There are 52 weekends in a year (I haven’t even included extended breaks such as Bank Holidays and Christmas). If you were to eat only 500 extra calories on both the Saturday and Sunday, by the end of the year you would have eaten your way through an extra 52,000 calories or around 12.7lbs of fat…
- 454 grams in a pound, 9 calories per gram in fat
- 454 x 9 = 4,086
- 52,000 / 4,086 = 12.7
Over three years, that’s an extra 38lbs of fat.
Or in other terms, about 3 dress sizes or an extra 8-10 inches on your waist.
So it’s time to ask, are your weekends making you fat?
In reality, for most people 500 calories is not even close to scratching the surface of the extra calories they would consume on the weekend days (and bear in mind I’m calling weekend Saturday and Sunday, I’m giving Friday as a freebie).
I’d be willing to get most people would eat an extra 500 calories at breakfast alone – you could get through 1000+ calories with a large fry up. A couple of croissants with butter and jam would easily surpass 500 calories too.
Add to that a pub lunch or maybe a meal at a restaurant later in the day and it’s easy to see how the weight climbs.
Weekends are when most people drink more too…
A pint of lager weighs in at around 250 calories, so if you go out on a Saturday and have 6 pints it’s an extra 1500 calories and that’s before you had demolished a kebab or curry. Wine isn’t a great deal better, with around 170 calories for a medium pub-sized glass.
If you have created a significant calorie deficit elsewhere in your week you may well get away with it, but if you haven’t, expect to see that scale nudging up slightly every month.
You can be ‘good’ all week, but a couple of really high calorie days over the weekend and you’ll undo all of that good work.
It’s the weekend inactivity that causes further problems…
When Rach and I first got together we lived in a shared house. The couple who we lived with used their weekends to ‘chill out’ (read: sit on their arses for 48 hours). The irony of this is that they both have OFFICE JOBS where they did nothing but sit down!
If their chilling out meant avoiding answering emails, not using the computer or phone etc, I could understand it – it’s a break from their norm, but to spend Monday to Friday sat down just to do more of it over the weekend used to baffle me.
We lived there for a year and the husband gained half a stone, the wife over a stone.
Rachel and I would go out all day seeing new places, going for walks, training for events we had coming up etc. When we did sit down, it was well earned.
At the risk of getting too philosophical, these are the days of our lives. Do you want to look back on your life and realise you spent most of it on your sofa? I don’t.
We’ve got two kids now, so we’re also duty bound to set a good example and encourage the kids to be active. The best time to do that for us is the weekend.
It’s a priority for us to be active as a family at weekends – if the weather is good we’ll be out walking in the forests, riding our bikes, playing in the garden etc. Our eldest plays football both Saturday and Sunday and the youngest (still too young to play football) will still come along to watch and run around.
We don’t do it for the calorie burn – that’s just a bonus. It certainly helps prevent the weekends from making us fat!
The whole point of this isn’t to tell you enjoying yourself makes you fat, it’s to show you that being lazy every weekend coupled with the inevitable extra calorie consumption is going to make you fat, regardless of how good you have been in the week.
It’s thermodynamics and it doesn’t give a shit if you ate 5 salads last week.
Are your weekends making you fat?
Start by taking a look at your weekend habits – if your weekends look like this…
- Friday Night – home from work, a couple of beers and a takeaway.
- Saturday – Lie in, fried breakfast, sit down watching sport and eating junk food, out in the evening for a meal and a few beers
- Sunday – lie in, fried breakfast, roast dinner, couple of beers, watch tv all day.
…you may have discovered the answer for why you weigh more this year than you did last year.
Guess what? If you keep it up, you’ll weigh even more next year….
There is a way to prevent your weekends making you fat and it’s remarkably easy.
If you know you’re going to have a high calorie weekend, eat well throughout the week. Train hard at the start of the weekend and before you have the higher calories, keep your food intake light.
Be really active…
There’s two ways being active helps – it burns a lot of calories and it also helps keep a lid on your ability to eat a lot of food. You’ll struggle to find a McDonalds in a forest and it’s hard to eat a curry on a bike, if you get what I mean.
You don’t even have to do a 2 hour workout to help offset a high calorie day. A good quality HIIT workout will do the trick. In the Ultimate HIIT Workout Book there are 52 workouts designed to burn a lot of calories and fat, fast!