All around the internet, in fitness and nutrition circles, and from personal trainers, there’s always talk about CHEAT MEALS.

What is a cheat meal? According to all these sources, it’s a meal that is outside the strict confines of whatever nutrition program or meal plan you are following. So if ice cream isn’t part of your plan, but you go have a Large Cotton Candy Blizzard when it shows up at your local Dairy Queen, that would be considered a cheat meal.

There’s all sorts of hand wringing, and guilt driven comments that usually crop up about how bad Amy’s cheat meal was, how she shouldn’t have had it and now she hates herself for it. On and on…

Or the flip side, at the start of his new plan, Joe wants to know just how often he can have a cheat meal, so he can plan for it and look forward to it, right from the start.

Now while Amy and Joe are fictional, this scenario is playing itself out thousands of times over with people desperate to lose weight and restore good health, but afraid that they aren’t capable of sticking with healthy nutrition. So, they look to cheat days or meals to make themselves feel better. Except it usually doesn’t work out that way.

This week I emailed you with a quote I love:

Believe you can and you’re halfway there

-Teddy Roosevelt

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How is this quote relevant to cheat days, weightloss and nutrition?

When you believe in your mind that you are capable of reaching your goals, that you WILL have success…you are able to visualize it and feel the emotions that come along with accomplishing those goals. These are both powerful in creating the habits and environment that will assist you in reaching those goals.

You gain the inner confidence and clarity about your plan, your goals. And this allows you to view your challenges differently. Rather than see them as road blocks, stopping you on your journey to better health and your ideal weight, you see them as simply a bump in the road, a moment to pause and reset and recommit to your goals.

But a cheat day is used as an out, a planned deviation, or an opportunity to beat yourself up for ‘failing’.

Who needs that kind of stress and negativity? You certainly don’t!

What if instead of both scenarios above, you know that you are confident in your goals, you know what your plan is! And if something comes up and you have a bowl of pasta at your in-laws, it’s simply a bump in the road. Those bumps happen, but you move past them easily in your car, why not treat it the same in your weightloss journey?? It happens, but no one should spend hours worrying over it!

If you have something special you would like to have for a special occasion, is there a way to recreate it in a way that fits your weightloss goals? Instead of trying to search for, or planning for cheat meals, why not find ways to get creative at home making your own Malted Chocolate Ice Cream, or a molten chocolate cake, or a delicious plate of Chicken ‘Fettucine’ Alfredo with Zucchini strip noodles?

Doesn’t that all sound delicious? And instead of guilt ridden “CHEATING” you get to enjoy every bite. That is something worth planning for!

But even if you have an evening out and you savor every bite of that bread along with your meal, it isn’t the end of it all. It’s just a bump in the road.

 

Move on! Pause, reset and recommit!

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