By April 17, 2012 Read More →

4 lesser-known food traps to avoid when you work from home

No need to put on weight when you work from home!

4 lesser-known food traps to avoid when you work from homeHow to work from home and not gain weight? Being aware of these common traps will help:

  • Nervous eating at networking meetings
  • You know the scenario – here you are, next to a loaded buffet table, expected to talk to people you’ve never met before. Piling your plate and then eating your way through it is a good way to fill embarrassing gaps in the conversation.

    Or it’s one of those networking breakfasts where everybody chooses the cooked option because that way you seem to get better value. Ploughing your way through indifferent sausage and egg takes your mind off the fact that in a few minutes you’re expected to stand up and deliver your ’60 seconds’.

    Steer clear – decide before you go to choose the ‘continental’ option. Yes, I know it’s only a mini packet of cereal, limp toast and some sad-looking fruit, but at least you won’t leave with a bad taste in your mouth, literally and metaphorically.

  • BOGOFs
  • Apparently 21st century man is programmed to spot and snap up bargains. And now that money is tight it’s especially tempting to go for those two for the price of one deals. Cut-price supermarkets are particularly lethal. The quality is good and the pocket money prices so deliciously retro.

    Steer clear – the only thing to do is leave it on the shelf – it’s just one occasion of temptation instead of many once it’s sitting on your shelf. You may feel you’re saving pounds but if you’re just going to pile them on…

  • Using food as an emotional crutch
  • Yes, it’s easy to do in life anyway, but when you work from home it’s an even bigger trap. Before you know it you’re using food as consolation, celebration, boredom avoider, a chance to think about that problem, avoidance technique – in other words anything that might crop up during your work from home day.

    Steer clear – decide on other ways to deal with each situation. If something good has happened, ring a friend. Been turned down for some work? Read what your role model has to say on the subject. Want to get your head round something that’s holding you up? Go for a walk and think it over.

  • Coffee shops, coworking and Jelly
  • When you work from home these are all excellent places to go to vary your routine, get a new perspective and meet people. They are also places where coffee is served and there are cakes and pastries piled up in full view. Have you ever got to the end of a coworking day and realised you’d lost count of how many cakes, biscuits and jelly beans you’d eaten?

    Steer clear – as with networking, it’s best to decide in advance how much you’re going to eat – and then keep count. If necessary move the plate away or offer it to others until it’s empty.

Posted in: Food

16 Comments on "4 lesser-known food traps to avoid when you work from home"

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  1. I can relate to all these temptations! But with a lot of willpower, a fridge devoid of temptations and a cupboard without biscuits, I’ve managed to actually lose weight! The networking cakes and client meeting biscuits sometimes prove just a step too far, especially if they’re dragging on a bit!

    • Judy says:

      Well done, Christine, and thanks for providing me with a positive story I can tell those who fear the proximity of the kitchen! And the odd treat doesn’t matter, does it, a home worker has to keep her energy up.

  2. I am actually eating much healthier now that I work from home. I have discovered the joy of making homemade soups. They are surprisingly quick and easy to make. I actually treat the prep time as a break away from the computer and it gives me valuable thinking time too.

    • Judy says:

      Thanks to you too, Dee, another home working healthy eating success! We had a soup-making phase last winter, but I’m afraid we’ve strayed lately 🙁

  3. I also find it easier to eat healthily while working at home. I simply do not have the biscuits, pastries and other “foods to be avoided” at home, but I do have a healthy supply of fruit and almonds. Also, having a detached home office makes it that little bit further away from the refrigerator.

    • Judy says:

      I agree, Malcolm, not having the naughty stuff in the house makes it much easier to be virtuous. I hadn’t thought of distance from the food as an advantage of a garden office before!

  4. Naomi says:

    It’s true. It’s tricky to not use the availability of food as an emotional crutch to any work problems. I realised I was doing this and decided to do the opposite. If I find myself reaching for ‘wrong’ foods, I take my dog out, go for a workout or anything that burns calories. I also try a little light meditation sometimes too. 10 Deep breaths, full exhilations to clear out the lungs.. feels great and I’m clear headed.

    • Judy says:

      Thanks, Naomi, and goodness me, you’re a healthy lot of home workers on here today! Just like me – naturally all the information for the post came from hearsay 😉

  5. Lianne-carla Savage says:

    Temptation so easy when you have convenient access to well stocked cupboards.

  6. Sara says:

    This is a big problem for working at home. You get bored, so you eat a piece of cake…then another. But hey! You’ve relieved your boredom. This habit adds up over the months and years to make you unhealthy and overweight.

  7. *Typing from a coffee shop*

    I am lazy, so I say no now so I don’t need to say no because I weigh too much later. A bit of control now is SOOOO much easier than later.

  8. Jessica Kennedy says:

    Great article, thank you! The more time I spend sititng working at my computer, the more the rhythm of my day revolves around my meals, and the fatter I’m getting. Oh dear.

    • Judy says:

      Hi Jessica, yes, it’s true food and drink is very important to home workers, for all sorts of reasons. It provides a structure for the day, an opportunity for a break or thinking time, and of course keeps us fuelled. I just have to avoid buying any sweet treats because I can’t leave them alone :-/
      Why not tell us your favourite home working snack – you could win a tasting box from Flavrbox to inspire some new and healthy eating habits 🙂