I love summertime.
Living in Canada, it takes a little longer for us to get to summertime, but once we’re there, man, it’s just beautiful. Longer, hotter days keep me wanting to be outside. I have a great outdoor spot where I can work or just enjoy being out in the sun. It’s absolutely perfect.
Summer is also the perfect time for impromptu day trips to hang out with my best friends, or quick weekend jaunts with my husband. It’s made for time spent at the lake or sleeping late while my husband and son are off fishing. With no set schedule comes a feeling like there aren’t many rules. And that is what sometimes comes around to bite me in the butt.
One of the things that makes keto easy for me is that there are rules. Mostly, for me, keto means either Intermittent Fasting (IF) or One Meal A Day (OMAD). I usually track my macros, although I’ve been following the keto lifestyle for long enough that I know the nutrient value of most of the food that I eat on a regular basis. The rules of keto keep me on track. I know how my body responds if I eat after my eating window closes. I know how my body responds if I have a beer instead of vodka with a low carb mixer. I know how I’m going to feel if I have a burger with a bun. The rules, largely put in place by me, to benefit me, because of how keto works for me, keep me on my toes, and make keto work for me.
But when summertime takes all the other rules and throws them out the window, well, sometimes the keto rules go flying right out, too! And I think I’m not the only one that happens to.
This summer, I’m determined to do better. I’m going to avoid my own known summer pitfalls.
Look, I know there are going to be times where I want to take a break from keto. But I’ll plan for those. I’ll do my “one and done” plan that I have used before. I’ll have one non-keto meal or event and then I’ll go back to keto with the very next meal. And I’ll stay keto for the rest of the week. Making a plan means that I know exactly when I’m going off keto, and exactly when I’m going back on. There are no questions, no “Oooh, that looks good!” and no giving into unexpected temptations.
Making a plan means that I can plan for a meal, a day, or a specific event like a vacation or a cruise. Last year we went to Mexico on vacation. The reality of an all-inclusive resort is that the food is incredible, and I wanted to enjoy the experience. So I did. I planned to go all-in while I was in Mexico. As soon as the plane landed back in Canada, I had a plan to get back to keto.
Another way to stay in charge over the summer is to think about your goal. My summer goal is not my overall keto goal. I mean, really, summertime for me really is about having fun. We are going to the lake and spending time on vacation. My usual goal for the summer months is simply not to gain weight.
Yep, that’s it.
I just don’t want to gain weight over the summer. While by and large I spend most days on keto, I do plan more off keto days during the summer months than I do during the winter months. So when I do plan to go off keto, I take into consideration a few things. When did I last go off keto? Did I last go off keto so I could have a handful of popcorn and some parmesan fries, or did I have a full on McDonald’s and tequila festival? If it was a full-on party, how long ago was it? If I had a full-on party and it was just a few days ago, doing it again today could seriously undermine my goal to not gain weight this summer. Better instead to wait a week or two before I do it again.
Which brings up one more important thing to consider. Summertime get-togethers usually involve alcohol. Alcohol cause keto problems in two ways:
First, you stop burning fat when you drink alcohol. That’s science. We know that your body prioritizes burning alcohol over everything else when you drink. If you have one shot once a month, that’s not really a big deal. If you have a few glasses of wine with dinner three or four times a week, that may be problematic when it comes to meeting your keto goals.
Alcohol may also lower your inhibitions when it comes to what and how you eat. If you’re at a party and you have a few drinks, that ice cream or pizza may start looking really good. Suddenly you’re eating carbs you didn’t plan on, in addition to dealing with the alcohol that you’ve consumed. Just like you plan your food and plan your times to go off keto, plan your alcohol carefully; maybe drink at home or only bring enough cash to cover one drink and then switch to water or iced tea so that the temptation doesn’t get as strong.
Summertime doesn’t have to mean it’s time to fall off the keto wagon. It just means you need to be aware of the ways that you could go off the rails, and plan for that not to happen! If you find that you need a little help, you can always join my Intentionally Bare Keto Support group on Facebook! We would love to have you there!
You got this!
~ Intentionally Bare
❗️ DISCLAIMER: Health information given here is based on public research and is not meant to take the place of your doctor's advice. Always do your own research and discuss it with your health practitioner before trying a new diet, supplement or exercise plan.
❗️ DISCLOSURE: I manufacture a line of 100% natural keto products under the brand name, Intentionally Bare. These products will be mentioned from time to time because they are amazingly healthy and fantastic for those on a ketogenic diet or anyone looking to improve their health. I am also a participant in the Amazon services LLC Associates Program, designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to amazon.com.** I ONLY ever post a link to products I personally USE and LOVE!