I’m going to let you in on a little secret. There’s a whole lot of cheating going on in these here parts! Cheating is delectable, satisfies that naughty streak and is oh soooo good! Before you go worrying about which way our Moral compass is pointing – we should probably let you know we are referring to deliberately indulging in ‘forbidden foods’ not cheating on your cuddle partner. Why is all this cheating going on? You might well ask. For a number of reasons and here’s why:
- When it comes to diet perfect is a fool’s errand, and places unnecessary stress on you psychologically. And we all know you need some mental energy left to work out the finer details of saving humankind with your bestie.
- Emotionally it makes eating clean the majority of the time more feasible.
- When done correctly it can be used as a dietary tool:
- It helps in stopping the body downregulating its metabolic rate (that we want to avoid at all costs – you want a furnace, not a barely there fire)
- If you have thrown the balance out a bit, it is useful for replenishing the glycogen your body requires for energy.
- If you accidentally went deep enough into the cheating hole, it can be a useful comparison for realising how good you feel when you are eating well and encourage you to keep ‘on the wagon’
- Cheat meals permit you to enjoy the splurges rather than feel guilty
Now before you go buying shares in Cadburys and requesting the take-out menu of every fast-food outlet in a 5km radius, you need to know its not a free-for-all . . . no breakfast, second breakfast, elevensies, lunch, afternoon tea . . . well, the point is you aren’t trying to get blind drunk on food. So what is the smart way to successfully taking the shackles off the menu every once in a while?
- Know ahead of time when you are going to be going out or taking a week/weekend away, that way it’s not falling off the wagon, it’s a planned indulgence day/week
- Keep up your training to take advantage of the increased energy and so you don’t have the ‘double dip’ of extra calories from food and decreased calories from not exercising
- After your planned indulgence simply get back to your clean eating programme
- Eat until you are satisfied, not over-stuffed
- Monitor how often ‘cheats’ are happening, they should not become too frequent
- Try to maintain a bit of balance between the macro-nutrients (Proteins, Carbs, Fats) rather than letting your cheat dinner be entirely from the dessert smorgasbord
- Remember people with the smarts do this in a planned, considered way but it is not the end of the world if there is the odd occasion when a ‘spontaneous’ indulgence creeps in
So there it is folks. There is no turning back for you now . . . I mean how do you once you’ve seen the light!