If you’ve ever tried going on a diet, you’re probably aware that work is one of the hardest places to stick to it. Things have been, shall we say.. different? For just about every person in the world due to Covid (yes we’re sick of hearing about it now too). For many of us one of the biggest paradigm shifts has been working from home full time. Some people love it; commuting from your bed to your home office is a pretty sweet gig. Others hate it and prefer having an environment that is ‘just for work’ and far away from the distractions of home and family. While things might never be quite the same as they were it’s a good bet that 2021 is going to see some roll backs to normality regarding working conditions for many which will mean some things will get harder again; your commute for one but also the temptation of impulse purchases and stress eating playing havoc with your diet progress (I can’t be the only one who’s on a diet after some lockdown boredom snacking can I?!)
Whether you work in a building that has a Starbucks in the basement that’s impossible to walk by or you work crazy hours with slim lunch breaks and fall victim to fast food on the fly, all of the healthy meals you planned when you worked from home can rather easily go out the window. If you want to break the unhealthy rut that food has over you in the office, here’s my three golden tips to make sure your days are filled with good nutrition:
Tip 1: Bring Fruit for Everyone – Try bringing a fruit platter to work for everyone to snack on; that will give you healthy snacking options and possibly win you a few brownie points with your coworkers. Or if you don’t want to take the time to shop and cut up all the fruit yourself, order the office a fruit basket online, there are websites custom built for this delivery service. Reasonable coworkers may be willing to chip in together to take a break from some of the greasy, fatty foods they may be used to snacking on. Better yet, bring the proposal to your manager and get the company to subscribe so you avail of free fruit on the regular.
Bring Lunch from Home – If you know you won’t be able to choose a salad when you go to get fast food instead of a greasy meal, bring your own food from home. If your office doesn’t have a fridge, it can get tough to bring your own food like fruits, veggies or meat. Think of investing in containers that will keep your food the right temperature. There are a ton of options out there these days for containers that either keep in the heat or the cold, which are perfect to sandwiches, salads or snacks of fresh fruit and veggies.
Find a Partner – Find someone else in the office interested in dieting and use them as your weight loss ally. Social support is a common and very effective supplement to your own willpower. When you get the urge to go to the vending machine for a snack, stop by their desk and let them know what you’re craving. Maybe just getting out of your seat and wandering is what you’re looking for and not the candy bar in the machine. Try to take your lunches together and you can talk about how it’s going and commiserate. Having someone to hold you accountable is always a good idea when dieting, especially when you’re in the workplace.
The truth is that dieting will always be a challenge no matter where you go in life; but the workplace can be particularly difficult for people that have trouble with willpower and peer pressure. Going out to business lunches or dinners can be difficult too, but with moderation and the right planning you can find something that will work for you. Schedule out your snacks and lunches so that you don’t have choices when it comes to your eating. And most of all, don’t fall victim to your sweet tooth!