Why You Need A Cheat Day
Losing weight is all about creating an energy deficit. This generally means significantly lowering your fat and carbohydrate intake. Consuming lean protein (think baked chicken and egg whites) and cutting way back on sources of bad carbs, such as bread and pasta, is key.
But there's a downside to limiting calories in such a way that this type of energy deficit is present. Your body begins to become accustomed to the calorie deficiency and it burns fewer of them in order to preserve energy. Taking an occasional break from calorie restrictions (in other words, cheating) causes your body to pick the calorie-burning speed back up.
Cheating On Your Diet The Right Way
So now that you understand the benefits of giving yourself a little break every once in a while, let's discuss how to go about doing this without causing a dietary disaster. Here are a few tips.
- Treat, don't cheat. First of all, get away from the idea that an infrequent splurge is cheating. Instead, consider it a treat. For example, allow yourself a piece of dark chocolate after a healthy meal. Don't spend the whole day gorging on junk food.
- Plan ahead. If you know you're going out with your friends, schedule your treat meal or snack for that time. Be extra careful all week, saving up calories for your special meal.
- Get back on the wagon. If you find yourself abusing the treat system, don't let it completely ruin your efforts. Maybe one little splurge turned into two days of binge eating. That's OK; just get back up, dust yourself off and start again. This is a marathon, not a sprint.
Dieting is hard, but it doesn't have to be impossible. Anything challenging is always easier with a support system on your side. To learn how personal trainer Ralph Roberts can help you stick to your plan and reach your fitness goals, reach out today.
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