Splitting a pizza, eating a tub of ice cream, a huge burger with fries and a large chocolate milk shake to wash it down followed by a trip to the grocery store for bags of candy. You’ve probably seen people post pictures of these things on a Saturday or Sunday with the caption “CHEAT” or “CHEAT MEAL”. I used to be one of them. You predominately see these posts from people who are either on a strict diet, eat “clean” or are prepping for a bodybuilding show.
It has been a year and a half since I started Flexible Dieting and counting my macros. Since incorporating a more balanced intake rather than eating clean, I have cut ties with cheat meals and here’s why.
- The term states that you are cheating or being unfaithful to your diet. A successful diet includes sustainability. If you feel the need to cheat on your way of achieving your goals every single weekend how successful can your methods really be?
- Let’s relate cheating to another topic for a second. If you cheat on your spouse, or a test let’s say, chances are as a human-being you are probably going to experience guilt afterwards. The same thing happens when you cheat on your diet. Bingeing on foods that you have (for some reason) deemed “bad” by restricting them during the week, will probably make you feel crappy. Over-indulging in these “off-limits” foods, may cause you to feel extremely guilty for not sticking to your goals.
- More bingeing=more restriction. Personally, when I would binge on my huge cheat meals on the weekends, I would then restrict myself even MORE the following few days to make-up for it. I would literally eat chicken and vegetables for every meal straight after having half a pizza or a tub of ice cream to my face. This just leads to an extremely unhealthy mentality and overall relationship with food.
I can honestly say I have not had a cheat meal since practicing a flexible lifestyle. Do I hit my macros perfectly every day? No way, but if I want something, I don’t restrict myself from having it. I incorporate things people may consider “cheats” into my daily food intake. Cra
ving a bagel? I eat it. Craving a Pop-Tart? Bring it on. I make these foods that I used to write-off fit into my daily routine if I really want them. I don’t force myself to stick to a strict diet weekly only to plan a ridiculous binge on the weekend and since doing that I have found so much more happiness and a great relationship with food. So instead of planning your next cheat meal, why not plan a more sustainable approach to nutrition?
Need help with that? Email me at FitnessTeam@sd-evolution.com and let’s talk nutrition.