How To Survive Pizza Night (And Stay On Diet)


The fam wants pizza. But you’re concerned about the “pizza-rolls” around your hips and waist.

How do you stay on track to lose weight during pizza night?

For that matter, how do you stay on track whenever the food options are less than ideal?

The Truth About Pizza

Let’s call pizza what it really is. Delicious, amazing goodness, delivering soul saving succulence like magical little food dolphins swimming from taste bud to taste bud… ok, sorry, that’s not what I meant.

It’s bread.

Bread with sauce and cheese. Sprinkled with flavorful stuff.

And while simply avoiding carbs isn’t the answer, bread doesn’t exactly make a well-rounded meal.

Yet pizza is the most common choice for Americans when eating out.

What you need is a game plan.

Game Plan Step 1

You are going to have one slice, and no more.

Why not skip it altogether? Because pizza is delicious. Seriously, it’s tough to keep having self discipline all day long. Every time you say no to something delicious, you’re using up a bit of (your very finite) self-control.

When you lighten up on yourself, you’re more likely to keep making good choices in the long run.

So tell yourself and your pals: “I’m only having one slice.” Now you have some accountability built in.

Go you.

Game Plan Step 2

Still hungry?

Of course you are!

Who feels satisfied after one slice?

Since you’re allowing yourself the pizza, your sides are where you’re going to be more strict.

Option 1: Eat a giant side of your favorite vegetable — as long as it’s not fried.

Option 2: Eat a salad. Just make sure you aren’t using lettuce as a means to get salad dressing in (or more cheese, or bacon, or croutons).

Game Plan Step 3

Address the invisible calories.

I’m talking about drinks. They are easy to consume, and add up quickly.

As much as a good beer or soda goes with pizza, you’re going to skip it this time. Some other choices are water, unsweetened tea, seltzer, or flavored water.

The goal is zero calories, while still keeping it healthy.

Advanced Game Plan

If you have control over the situation, here are some ways to step up your pizza game:

  1. Add protein— not pepperoni. Chicken makes a good, unprocessed topping.

  2. Load the pizza up with veggies, and still have a healthy side salad.

  3. Make it at home! You get to control how it’s made, so it can be way less processed.

Other “Unhealthy” Meals

These principles can be applied to any meal that threatens your weight loss goals.

The break down will always be something like this:

  • Whatever the main food, set a defined limit on how much you’ll eat. A good rule is roughly half your normal serving.

  • Pick a healthy, low calorie side (this should almost always be vegetables).

  • Don’t load up on liquid calories.

There are always ways to make “unhealthy” meals more healthy. One thing I offer my personal coaching clients is a "Meal Makeover." I take one of your favorite recipes and redesign it to better fit your nutritional needs.

Just Eat It

If you’ve just finished an entire pizza by yourself, don’t fret. Tomorrow is another day and the road you’re on is a long journey full of potholes, dips, and hills.

As long as it’s not happening all the time, there’s no reason to feel bad or worry about blowing your hard work by occasionally self-indulging.

But there are also times when you need to stay on track. Now you have a game plan for those nights. All you have to do is stick to it.

Is pizza the hardest food to say no to for you? Or is it something else? When will you be using this plan?

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