Deciding to turn over a new leaf and lead a healthier life is a major step in itself, but that’s almost the easy part. On our own, we can tackle eating healthier, drinking less and moving more, but what about when we want to connect with friends and family? For many of us, socializing often consists of grabbing a glass of wine with a friend or getting pizza for game night, but the road to a healthier, more fit you doesn’t have to mean completely giving up your social life.
Here are eight ways to accomplish your healthy goals while keeping your social life intact:
Publicly announcing your commitment to healthier living can help keep you accountable — and your friends and followers will likely support and cheer you on along the way. Checking in at the gym, taking sweaty selfies and posting healthy food pics are great ways to stay accountable.
When it comes to working toward fitness goals or sticking to a health-focused food regime, spending time with friends who have similar goals is more likely to help keep you on track. In other words, you’ll be less likely to participate in a city-wide pizza tasting tour.
Meeting up with friends to go for a hike or take a bootcamp class can be an excellent way to socialize, too. You can give each other support during a grueling workout, then bond over how sore you’re going to be the next day. Plus, making plans with a friend also makes you less likely to flake on them, and vice versa — a win-win!
The cost-saving measure of “pregaming” in your early twenties involved mixing drinks at home before hitting the club, but you can tailor that concept to prepare for a night out. Instead of arriving at an event hungry, snack on a piece of fruit or a handful of almonds before heading out.
READ MORE > WHAT SERVING ALCOHOL LOOKS LIKE (INFOGRAPHIC)
An easy way to cut calories is to drink water or a non-alcoholic fruit shrub instead of a cocktail. But, you don’t have to give up alcohol completely if you don’t want to — opt for lower-calorie drinks like vodka soda or champagne. Also, make sure you’re drinking a fair amount of water between alcoholic beverages.
Eating family-style means you can try more things and watch your portions. Many restaurants offer exceptionally large portions, sometimes doubling or tripling a “normal” serving size, resulting in calorie bombs. Try to leave some food on your plate or box it up to take home.
Even if you’re not a whiz in the kitchen, if you master some healthy dishes, you can prove to your guests that healthy eating can be fulfilling and delicious. It can even include dessert!
As the night progresses, it’s easy to let your guard down and maybe fall off the wagon. Instead, before the party plan on a certain time when it’s best to leave and stick to it. Sleep deprivation can wreak havoc on your system — and you’ll thank yourself in the morning.