For Event Professionals being on site running an event is what we live and breathe for, but with living in a hotel for a week comes breakfast buffets and sweet treats at every break.
Our MD, Holly Moore, was on site last week at the incredible Ellenborough Park, read below how she banned the buffets and stuck to her healthy lifestyle plan.
“As the years have gone by and I’ve become more interested in health and wellbeing, I’ve struggled with the balance whilst on site. I’m all or nothing with eating, so if I am eating all the cake, I am eating all the cake and the bacon butties and the lasagne and the chips – commonly known as crew food.
I also hate working out alone so I have grand plans to run or use the hotel gym but they are never proper work outs and I only go a couple of times, then feel annoyed with myself.
Over the last 6 months I have been doing a lot of work on consistency and changing unhelpful messages I tell myself. So, with a week away at a 5-star venue, I thought about what my top tips are to feel and look good whilst working 15-hour days and being constantly tempted by sugary and salty food!
1. Consistently Set Your Alarm
Now I appreciate I am not the norm! But Monday to Friday I set my alarm for 5am regardless of what I have on that day. Even if I’m not working out until 7am I will still set my alarm at 5am because I hate jumping out of bed and exercising straight away. I like to have my double Nespresso, do my exercise and get ready (quickly!).
2. The Body Coach
I hate working out on my own so if I use the hotel gym my workouts are poor and I don’t enjoy them. I realised that I’m best at exercising when I enjoy it, so a friend suggested I use Body Coach TV on YouTube, the workouts are decided for you and explained which is helpful as I need to be told what to do!
Whilst on site I normally train one hour a day; I’ll do two rounds of his 20-min HIITs and 10-min abs. On one of the days I did an upper body video that included weights so I headed down to the hotel gym with my IPad and headphones and followed the video there.
3. Skip the Breakfast Buffet
Breakfast at a 5-star hotel is always to die for but it’s where you can rack up extra calories without realising. I also like to maximise my time so would rather have my pre-work time spent working out. I brought with me Rude Health Porridge Pots, My Protein Powder and made over night oats for each morning.
I love them both anyway so I just didn’t go and drool over the buffet. Also, if I woke up full (due to how much we’d eaten the day before) I didn’t eat for the sake of it I waited until I was hungry.
4. It’s all about balance
On this event we were fed like queens and we were able to eat what the delegates did. Lunch and dinner was a beautiful buffet every day. I avoided the bread and pasta but filled my plate with the meats, fish, salad and deli items. Of course, you eat more than normal but if your plate is like a rainbow I reckon that is okay!
I think if you avoid the white carbs it balances out. You’re probably eating more fat and sugar than you realised as everything, even on a healthy buffet, is dressed and cooked in various ways.
On the pudding front I say if it’s a pudding you really like, have it. But don’t have it for the sake of it. I couldn’t resist a Lemon Meringue Cheesecake or Strawberry Eaton Mess. I think it’s key to realise that when you are eating restaurant food, you’re probably doubling your calories each day (whether you choose healthy options or not) so if you can make healthy choices at least you are getting your nutrients for optimal energy.
Also try and get through 2 litres of water per day. If you struggle I’d recommend having a little Vimto No Added Sugar Squeezy. I find if I need to get more water down me it helps. I know it’s full of sweetener but at least I am keeping hydrated.
5. Snack Attack
I love snacks! I love a snack mid-morning and mid-afternoon (even if I’m not hungry) it just brightens my day. But instead of reaching to the scones, cream and chocolate, I brought some snacks with me. My faves are Grenade Protein Bars, Deliciously Ella Energy Balls, Hartley’s Sugar Free Jelly, Beef Jerky and apples. I also always bring de-caff pyramid tea bags and options hot chocolate as I am an old lady and love nothing better than a hot drink and a book when I get in from the event.
I appreciate some of these contain sweeteners which some people don’t like but for me its about having what I like and feeling good.
6. Beauty Tips
One for all you female event profs… When you’re getting 5 hours sleep and have to be front of house all day it’s hard to keep up appearances. You can be running around all day and then suddenly look in the mirror and realise your face has fallen off! So, my go to beauty products are…
St Tropez Water – this is amazing. Take your make-up off at night and then just spritz your face with this peachy spray and you’ll wake up with a golden glow. If you still feel a bit pale, just spritz some more in the morning under or over make up! I feel amazing when I wear this.
Sanctuary Spa Wet Skin Moisture Miracle – we know applying body lotion takes a while; not with this! Whilst you’re in the shower you smooth this all over just before you get out, get out of the shower and dry as normal. Saves at least 5 minutes!
Lashes – another top tip if you are away for a while on site is false eyelashes. I get Russian lashes done with Catherine at Essence, Wilmslow. That way you wake up with your eyes on! Another 5 minutes at least saved.
Whilst on site you will never be as healthy or workout as hard as you would at home, but if you can find strategies to be your best whilst working then you come back from an event feeling energised.
I also energised my mindset as this is the first time I’ve exercised every day and also resisted most temptations. So, I was pleased with myself!
Last tip… a bum bag – we have branded bum bags on site, so my lippy, mints, phone and a snack of course are always close to hand!”
Take a look at another of our blog posts on healthy eating at corporate events!
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