Sarah Hazelwood

Eight tips to surviving Easter on a diet

With Easter fast approaching read Sarah's top tips on surviving the holidays if you're watching the calories.

Since the New Year I’ve been on a mission to shed the pounds. With bridesmaid duties in August fast approaching, Slimming World has become my new best friend.

At first it all seemed pretty simple, but as the weeks have gone on I’ve had to face birthday celebrations, trips away and now my favourite time of the year – Easter – is just around the corner.

Whilst I haven’t been completely depriving myself of the sweet stuff over the past couple of months, my usual Easter routine of chocolate for breakfast, lunch, dinner and supper will need to be revised. Saying that, one thing I don’t intend to do is completely deprive myself of a little indulgence.

If you too are terrified of the temptations that lie ahead, then read on, because even just writing these top tips to enjoying Easter, without letting your hard work go to waste, has inspired me to go easy on the eggs.

Go for quality not quantity

Ditch the milk chocolate and head on over to the dark side. Dark chocolate is a lot richer, so you don’t get that desire to polish the lot off. It’s also packed with powerful antioxidants – what more could you ask for?

Portion control is key

Smaller Easter eggs aren’t just for kids, you know? Ok, so they’re still calorific, but not half as much as the luxurious ones you’d probably normally go for. If you’re going to treat yourself opt for hollow eggs with no filling or extra treats on the side. Then, eat it slowly and enjoy every mouthful or you’ll be wallowing in a pit of chocolate-based self-pity, before you know it.

Don’t get carried away

When the shops and supermarkets are full to bursting with Easter deals it can be easy to buy more than you need. Easter is one day of the year, so only buy what’s necessary – it isn’t an excuse to have a whole week off stuffing your face. If you’ve got anything left over, why not take it to a food donation bin at your local supermarket? You can guarantee there’s someone out there that needs it more than you do.

Focus on the fun stuff

Easter is actually about far more than just chocolate eggs. Plan some fun activities with friends and family and it’ll really take your mind off those naughty treats. What’s more, laughing releases shed loads more of those 'good' chemicals from the brain than chocolate ever could, so get organising something special.

It’s not all about chocolate

If you’re often at the receiving end of an abundance of Easter eggs then try asking for something a little different. I’ve already put my request into family and friends, so I’m not stuck with a cupboard full of chocolate. Flowers are a great alternative – they look pretty and in my house they’ll certainly last a lot longer than chocolate would.

Have healthy alternatives to hand

It’s often easier said than done, but try and stay motivated and you’ll find that you’re able to treat yourself and stay on track. Just make sure you’ve got lots of healthy alternatives near by for when hunger strikes. There are loads of recipes out there for things like low-fat hot-cross buns and muffins. Give them a go and curb those cravings.

Gets some exercise

Now, I’m not talking about heading to the gym at the crack of dawn on Easter morning. But, if you do happen to snaffle more chocolate than you should, forget the afternoon nap and treat yourself and the family to a walk or trip to the park. Not only will you have a good time, but you’ll burn some calories too.

Last but not least…

Keep your long-term goal in sight

If you’re anything like me you’ll have been meal-prepping LIKE A BOSS and refusing office snacks a-plenty for the past few weeks. I’ve discovered a streak of willpower I never knew I had, so the last thing I want is to let all my hard work slip away and risk putting any weight back on, just because of one chocolate-filled day.

Always keep in mind the reason you’re trying to lose weight in the first place and most importantly, don’t deny yourself completely, because we all know that we want to overindulge on everything we know we can’t have.

I hope these tips help you see past the chocolate and focus on what Easter is really about. Fingers crossed you’ll find that resisting the urge to pig out is a lot easier than you first thought. Good luck!

Marlie Packer also has some great advice (as well as tips and tricks) on sticking to healthier living.

Got any more tips? Share them below and don’t forget to let me know how you get on.