Football season is finally here! Don’t let the weekly games put a halt to summer weight loss and fitness goals. There are many ways to still have fun tailgating while also being calorie conscious. Check out these eight tailgating tips for those watching their weight.

1. BYOF: Bring your own food. The more prepared you are for the Pats, the better. Patriots tailgating typically includes cheeseburgers on the grill, sausages, nachos, cookies and other snacks. Bring flavorful yet easy-to-pack options like fruit salad, baked chips with light dip, marinated chicken to throw on the grill and light side dishes like cucumber tomato salad.

2. Eat the right stuff: Fill up on protein, veggies and fruit instead of eating the empty, calorie-laden snacks that are out on the table.

3. BYOB: This is an obvious one. By bringing your own booze, you can save tons of calories. Skip pre-made pitchers of sangria and margaritas or full-calorie beers by having options of your own. If you have ice and plenty of Bud Light, Skinny Girl Margaritas, pitchers of wine spritzers or whatever your go-to drink is, you won’t be missing out on any of the fun.

4. Go light on the drinks: There will be plenty of time during the game for watching Brady strut his stuff while sipping a brew. So what is the big rush to chug down high-calorie cocktails before the game even starts? Alternate water with alcoholic drinks and you can still catch a buzz while staying healthy and hydrated.

5. Walk around: Gillette Stadium and Patriot Place are packed with things to do and places to shop before or after the game. Burn off some of the football food and drinks with at least a half hour to an hour of walking around. Check out other tailgating parties or venture out to buy some new Patriots gear in the area stores. You could even do a loop during halftime at the game to see all aspects of the stadium.

6. Get moving: Besides walking, why not bring a football to toss, a frisbee to throw or a soccer ball to kick and burn even more calories while hanging out pre and post game? Playing games and sports will keep you occupied from consuming too much food and drinks before the game even starts and will kill time when traffic is crazy getting out of the parking lots post game.

7. Save points: If participating in a program like Weight Watchers, plan ahead. Even if you are not in such a program, try to go light on the eating and drinking for the week. Weight Watchers, for instance, gives members a weekly allowance of additional points to play around with for special events like football games. This is the perfect time to use some of those bonus points to enjoy great food during Patriots season.

8. The morning matters: You may go nuts over-thinking how to burn calories and prevent yourself from taking in too much food and drinks while tailgating. The solution to this headache is to wake up early, have a healthy, light breakfast and get a workout in before tailgating even begins. Then, continue on with your healthy lifestyle the next day.

Michelle Levine is a creative energetic, young professional that is passionate about everything Boston has to offer. She loves to attend local events, dine out, and cook and wants to share her findings with you. Her work can be found on


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