Sep 2012

Can vacation help you lose weight?

I hope you’ve been enjoying your fall. San Francisco has the strangest weather and though it was chilly and foggy all summer, it’s been a gorgeous 75 and sunny almost everyday this month. Jonathan and I have been missing the seasons since we moved here, so we made a plan to travel to the seasons this year.We decided to search for colorful foliage and signs of fall in Yosemite National Park this week to hike and camp for 5 days. It’s been an incredible adventure and I can’t wait to send you pics and tell you all about it next week.Before I left, one of my friends told me, “Jeeze, Sarah. I feel like you’re ALWAYS on vacation!”That’s because I am.
I am in no way telling you this to brag; I want to inspire you to make this a priority and explain to you why this is so crucial for your health.When we are going about our normal lives, we encounter the same activites over and over again. Though we may love our jobs, our home and our family, there’s very little that’s new and exciting.Having adventure is a human need, and when there’s a lack of it in our lives, we tend to look for adventure through food.  Maybe you’ve been wanting to go out to 4 exciting new restaurants a week and consuming too much rich food. Maybe eating all the ice cream in your freezer is the perfect way to shake up the day. Maybe munching on chips gives you that rush you’ve been craving. Or maybe eating pizza in front of the TV is the perfect escape from your life.Whatever it is, your habit is not going to go away until you have some “new” in your life. It’s time to get out, shake things up and have an adventure.

Here are some important things to remember when you’re planning your vacation:

You don’t need a ton of time to go on vacation.  I’m sure it’s easy to think, “easy for you, Sarah! You’re self-employed!”. True. But I chose this career to support my flexible hours. Plus, Jonathan, who is a Urology resident, has the most inflexible and busy schedule in the world and he finds time to maximize his vacation. If he can do it, you can do it.

Think about vacations you can take on the weekends that require no longer than a 3 hour drive. This way you can leave Friday after work and return Sunday before bed.

You don’t need a ton of money to go on vacation all the time.  I want you to make a list of places that you can stay at for free.  Maybe your best friend lives in a cool city, your aunt has a weekend home in the country, your co-worker’s parents live 3 hours away in a gorgeous spot. There’s nothing wrong with asking them to borrow the house, do a house swap, or couch crashing. Make sure to hire a cleaning lady and leave an amazing gift when you leave.

Don’t save your vacation days until the end of the year. I see this all the time with my clients, they hoard their days and then they expire. Think ahead about how you can maximize your vacation days and spread them out over the year. This year, Jonathan and I are taking vacation together in September, February and June plus a long weekend around Thanksgiving and Christmas. This way we have have regular time together and an opportunity every season to shake things up.

I’m sure you have a million reasons why you can’t go on vacation, and I bet some of them are true, but I’m challenging you to get creative with how you could.  Just think about it, what if you could go on vacation more this year? How can you pull it off?In the comments below, I want to hear your plans! Any affordable vacations ideas or must-go spots? I really want to hear your ideas so we can inspire each other to get-away and have more adventures so we’re no longer diving into a box of Oreos.

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  • Lisa

    This is really true for me. I eat out of boredom at home. When I’m on vacation, I tend to be really active and while I do eat well, I almost always lose weight (and probably gain muscle). I feel so much more alive, too!

  • Maria

    My husband is also doing is residency, in NYC . We are debating if we should go away, ( on our upcoming vacation ) because with the cost of living in the city we have to kinda of compromise our vacations for now. But, after reading your post, I realized your right. We need our time to get-away and if we always make excuses on why we shouldn’t go then we will never go. So I’m going to start researching and make it happen!!!

Sarah Jenks

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