Working at home? How to avoid piling on the pounds!
It's so tempting isn't it? Work is not going well. Or you have a
deadline looming. Or you've got to update your accounts. Much
easier to make endless trips to the fridge to fill up on snacks!
But when you start working at home, it can be alarming how
quickly the pounds creep up, just because food is so available.
And you bitterly regret all those snacks next time you get on
the scales or try to do up something you haven't worn for a
Now, a normal office is not always the easiest place to control
overeating either - everyone brings cakes and candy to share for
the most minor celebration, and you have more opportunity for
social type eating and drinking at lunch and after work. But a
full fridge is a bigger threat - after all no one is watching
you like they would be if you had three pieces of the cake at
Keeping out of the kitchen altogether would be one solution. You
could pack your lunch and healthy snacks before you start the
day, have a supply of cool drinks and set up tea and coffee
making facilities in your home office - pretend you don't have a
kitchen. But most of us won't do that. We like being at home
because we have access to all the facilities that home offers.
Sometimes it's great to be able to start dinner early or do a
couple of chores while we take a breather from our other tasks.
But there are a few things you CAN do without making the kitchen
and the fridge a "no-go" area.
- Make your lunch before you begin work - or at least know
exactly what you are going to have. This way you are less likely
to dive for the nearest fattening snack because you suddenly
noticed you worked way past the point when you should have eaten
and you are ravenous.
- Also prepare some healthy snacks so that you can grab them
from the fridge and go. Sticks of carrot, cucumber, celery and
the like make great nibbles when you haven't time to stop for a
full meal. Put a tablespoonful of low-calorie dip into a small
bowl if you don't like them just as they are.
- If you know you are going to be grazing all day - plan for 5 or 6 mini-meals throughout the day, rather than grazing AND
eating a whole lunch. While this might be impractical in an
office, at home you can do exactly as you like - make the most
of it. A typical day might be
- A bowl of fruit for breakfast.
- A couple of crackers with sugar-free peanut butter half way through the morning.
- Vegetable soup or salad for lunch.
- A yogurt with chopped up
apple in the afternoon.
- 10 or so pretzel sticks to keep you
going until dinner.
- If you can, try and take a break away from your work area while you eat so that you have time to focus on the food. It's
too easy to wolf down a whole snack or meal and not even notice
you've eaten it. If you don't have that focus it's harder to
feel satisfied by the food you've had and you're more likely to
want more straight away and overeat as a result. And of course
you avoid those problems with keyboards getting sticky and work
getting spoiled with bits of food.
- If you're working at home, you may find you have to keep some foods out of the house because they are just too dangerous to
have around all day. My downfall is chocolate. So, if I buy
chocolate biscuits for my kids I choose the kind that I don' t
like that much and they do. But you may have to decide not to
buy chocolate and junk snack foods at all if you really can't
resist. It will do everyone else good too. And you can only eat
what is there.
- As for exercise, at least make sure you move around throughout
the day if your job is desk based. It's a huge bonus that no one can see you pacing around when you are on the phone, or doing
exercises to avoid getting too tense such as rolling your neck,
circling your shoulders or arms or doing leg extensions. If you
make it a habit to move around just a couple of minutes every
half an hour - the kind of break you need to be taking anyway -
you will have taken over 30 minutes exercise in an 8-hour day! I
find that when things get on top of me and I haven't had time
for an early-morning aerobics session, 10 minutes vigorous
housework once an hour works for me. I get some exercise, go
back to my huge work task list feeling ready to tackle it AND I
don't worry that my home is falling apart while I stay attached
to my computer.
- Look like you mean business. I know it's great to be able to slob around all day in sweat pants and a t-shirt but it will do
your self-image no good and you won't feel that waistband
expanding half so much as you do when you wear normal smart
casual clothes. Wear something comfortable but smart. You have
to show yourself that it's worth looking good just for you so
you get the message when you eat too.
- Keep regular hours. Although there may be a crisis or two where you absolutely have to work through the night and fortify
yourself with pizza or ice-cream, you can't make this a regular
habit for the sake of your weight, your health or your sanity.
- By the same token, get plenty of rest. There have been studies showing that a lack of sleep causes us to eat more during the
Working at home IS fantastic. You are in control of your own time and your own choices much more than you ever were working
for someone else. Design your working life to suit YOU and how
you want to live. Want to be healthy and slim? Then DESIGN your
day to meet your goals. You are the one who calls the shots now.
Janice Elizabeth is a weight loss coach and author of "The Diet
Exit Plan". Request her FREE 15 page report "How to lose weight
without dieting - 7 secrets the diet industry doesn't want you
to know" at http://www.SimplySlimming.com TODAY!
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Copyright © 2003-2019 Stephanie Foster unless otherwise indicated
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