So, you’re having a tough time getting your exercise time in and eating right? But, what can you expect?
You get home from work and you’re just plain tired. You don’t want to cook, so you grab a quick snack that you picked up at the store and you nuke it, or you run out for a bite, which you really don’t feel like doing because you’re tired.
And working out? Forget it. Either there are family commitments or commitments to friends, or worse, that proposal needs to be done by tomorrow and you need to get going on it before it gets too late.
Morning comes and the routine starts over again….
Ahhh, the word sounds so sweet. When it arrives it’s even sweeter. Time to get out of Dodge, get away from all the hassles – far away if possible. If we can’t get out-of-town, at least we change the routine – get some extra sleep, go out and have some fun, which usually includes food and drink – sometimes more than is prudent, or healthy.
But does that mean that we should ditch the vacation if we want to be healthier?
The fitness columnists over at The Washington Post and dietician Felicia Stoler, host of TLC’s reality show “Honey We’re Killing the Kids,” recommend taking a health based Staycation. What is this comprised of?
Instead of sightseeing, you’ll explore how to build more physical activity into your daily life and figure out smarter ways to shop for groceries and plan meals. It’s unlikely you’ll lose 10 pounds in a week like they do on TV. But by getting a jump-start on an exercise routine in your own neighborhood and cooking in your own kitchen, you’re setting yourself up to continue these behaviors even when real life kicks in again.
In other words, utilize the time of your vacation to design a healthier you.
On the one hand this sounds like a good idea. After all, why wouldn’t such a vacation be good for you? On the other, it sounds like a recipe for setting yourself up for disaster – where you’re proud of yourself for spending a week eating healthy, hitting the gym, and cooking your own meals, but crushed after you get back into your daily routine (See red text above) and you can’t get to the gym, can’t cook your own meals, and can’t seem to get enough time for yourself for sleep or recreation.
The article itself points out this could be a problem:
The key is remembering that you need to make these changes part of your regular routine, says physician Arthur Frank, founder and co-director of the George Washington University Weight Management Program. “A week of working out is essentially useless unless you can continue it,” he says.
And without a real itinerary, you could fall into the trap of snacking to alleviate boredom. “Most people do well much of the day until it becomes unstructured,” Frank says.
This is a design problem. This particular design problem requires empathy and understanding of what Read the rest of this entry »