Welcome to the second installment of the Common Pitfalls to Weightloss!
Pitfall #2: Turning a cheat meal into a cheat day/week
I'll be the first to say that everyone deserves a break every once in a while! I know i sure do after weeks of super clean eating. There isn't a better way for one to maintain their sanity, shock their metabolism, and treat themselves after being super dedicated to their routine. This is where the cheat meal comes into play.
When your body has spent weeks eating the same diet of egg whites, chicken, cottage cheese, tofu, all spread out in even portions over the course of the day, it tends to get accustomed to the changes, it alters the body's metabolsim so that fat burning slows to a halt. Why does our body have to be so adaptive?!
The cheat meal is a meal infused with things we would not normall eat, the premise behind it is to literally "shock" the metabolism into high gear in order to digest the unsavory fats or high carbs we wouldn't normally eat.
Not only does it help with the metabolism, but it also helps mentally. After a cheat meal, i am ultra focused for the next couple weeks, and my sanity is maintained, no urges or anything - they have all been satisfied by the previous meal!
The problem with the cheat meal is that one might take it past what it is intended for. They might abuse the principal of the cheat meal, and have a cheat day instead, a full out day where anything can be eaten and in mass quantities.
This isnt the right way to go about it! Its possible to totally throw off your training and progress from the previous week - not only that, but your also setting yourself up to fall into that rut again. One cheat day becomes 2, then you might eat clean for another couple days, but your body begins to beg for that tasty treat - the food you forced yourself to quit!
The best way around it is to show a level of discipline, every week, pick one day and one time of the day - preferably early in the morning or lunchtime - which will give your body adequate time to digest the food before it is stored as fat, and go nuts on one meal!
The most likely scenario is that if you have been eating clean for a while, you will feel bloated, repulsed, and generally sick of what you just ate - which serving as a motivator will push you back into the normal routine again!
Keep eating clean!
ps. pasta serves as a great cheat meal!