Friday, January 21, 2011

Weekly Weigh-In: 1/21/11

Weight: 124.4 
Body Fat: 19.5% + 3% = 22.5%
Measurements: 34"-26"-33.5"-18" 

There's a topic that has come up on the Calorie King forums with regularity over the last two years of my subscription.  

That topic?

Cheat days.

In theory, a cheat day is a day upon which you have no restrictions on the food that you eat. You want ice cream? You dish yourself out some ice cream and you eat it.  You want potato chips? Dig in! Cheat days, in their purest form, mean a glaringly total lack of moderation.

In my opinion, a cheat day is indicates that you consider yourself to be on a diet and must subsequently severely restrict specific foods or food groups from your daily eating habits. To that end, I do not believe cheat days have any part in a healthy lifestyle change.  The ultimate goal of weight loss is the following period of weight maintenance and I firmly believe that allowing yourself to continue with a cheat day mentality is disastrous.

You can't be perfect every day and you certainly cannot stop yourself from having cravings for particular foods. It's how you handle those cravings that matters and relegating them to one day a week or month is likely not the best strategy. Learning strategies to incorporate smaller, but satisfying, indulgences on a more regular basis is less likely to leave you feeling deprived of the foods you enjoy.