WeightWatchers Weekend survival guide

Whether its a holiday or just an average weekend we've got five tips to max your weekend, but not your budget.
Published August 10, 2021 | Updated November 17, 2022

Long weekend coming up? Or maybe just a well deserved couple of days off, nothing can derail a weight loss journey faster than a weekend filled with social events or a few too many free-time free-for-alls. As soon as Friday evening rolls around, there’s that temptation to ditch the structure of the week and lean into unhelpful choices.

Below are five tips to help you enjoy a fun, carefree weekend that won’t leave you feeling contrite on Sunday evening.

Set wellness guidelines

Whether your agenda includes a friend's wedding, a sporting event or a relaxing time at home, have a general plan for how much sleep you’re going to get, how you’ll fit activity into your days and set aside some weekly Points for your non-negotiables.

Sticking with your weekday bedtime routine will help reinforce your body's natural circadian rhythm and help you wake feeling refreshed and ready to make helpful choices. When it isn’t possible to go to bed at your usual time, aim to still get the recommended seven to nine hours of sleep.

There are hundreds of ways to earn Points, and they include everything from gardening and housework to biking and even having sex. Make engaging in physical activity that you enjoy a priority, especially if your plans for the weekend are sedentary. It could be as simple as starting each day with a walk.

Deprivation doesn’t feel good anytime but especially on weekends. With WW, everything is on the menu regardless of their Points value. Determine what your weekend non-negotiable foods are and pre-track your weekend meals and snacks accordingly. If you’re really worried that you won’t have enough Points, consider leaning into your ZeroPoints foods list to bulk up some of the meals that you’re not as excited about.

Practice mindfulness

Savour everything. If you’re eating, take time to notice and appreciate the smell, flavour, and texture of your food. Try putting your cutlery down between mouthfuls, and between each forkful, ask yourself two questions: am I still hungry and am I enjoying this food? Research shows that we tend to eat more in group settings so this is particularly important if you’re dining out with friends. In those situations, you want to prioritize engaging with your friends over the food. Think of it this way: the activity is the conversation with your friends and the food is just a bonus.

Finally, if alcohol is on the menu, keep in mind that after a few drinks, food appears more attractive. Try to eat a ZeroPoint food before your first drink and then enjoy a glass of water between drinks to help cut down on that extra round..

Know what cues your unhelpful behaviours

A cue is what kicks off a behaviour.. Knowing what specific foods, feelings or environments cue you to overeat or not pay attention is the first step in developing strategies to get ahead of the situation. If it’s a particular food, it may be helpful to replace it with a lower Points alternative that you can enjoy in its place. If feeling bored is a cue you can try to focus your attention on an activity you enjoy that takes you away from the kitchen or keeps your hands busy. Managing environmental cue can be tricky if it’s a place that you can’t completely avoid. In those instances, it may be a matter of using your WW app food tracker to find lower SmartPoint alternatives or saving room within your Points Budgets to enjoy a non-negotiable food item.

Partner up

Having someone to share your goals and challenges with can be a game changer. If you don’t have a person in your life that you feel comfortable sharing your weight and wellness journey with, sharing regular updates in an online community - such as WW Connect - can also be beneficial. Knowing that you are going to be sharing your victories and setbacks will serve as extra motivation to do the things you say you’re going to do, whether it’s sticking to your Points Budget or getting in a certain amount of physical activity.

Give yourself grace

One weekend will not take away from all of the non-scale victories and helpful habits you’ve developed throughout your weight loss and wellness journey. However your weekend turns out – be kind to yourself! Research shows that people who practice self-compassion are more likely to eat well and participate in regular physical activity – two very important things that are crucial to sustainable weight loss.