PDA

View Full Version : Do you cheat?


OnePsychLynne
March 20th, 2011, 09:18 AM
Do you incorporate a cheat day into your diet regimen to help you get over your cravings and get refocused on your diet and goals?

If so, what do you do? If not, why?

I'm not sure I should be asking the question four days into my own diet, but here it is anyway. Thanks everybody!:D

delacruz
March 20th, 2011, 10:47 AM
Do you incorporate a cheat day into your diet regimen to help you get over your cravings and get refocused on your diet and goals?

If so, what do you do? If not, why?

I'm not sure I should be asking the question four days into my own diet, but here it is anyway. Thanks everybody!:D

I don't exactly incorporate a cheat 'day' into my Weight Watchers plan, but I often snack at night without tracking it, and consider it 'cheating', and fool myself into thinking it's OK to take care of that little bit of craving like that.

However, after months of doing this and not losing an ounce more in the past 4 months (just before my last cruise) than the initial 28 lbs I lost last year, I realize I am only cheating myself, and wasting all the other time I am doing so well.

What I am trying to get my mindset back to now is that if I am going to do all that snacking all night, I'm going to have to make it part of the plan, and track it. Or if I NEED to have something that's a real splurge for me, I should just plan for it - sticking to lots of fruits, veggies, water, and some lean protein throughout the day - enough to make me not starving, but have plenty of WW points (or calories according to your plan) for that splurge.

There shouldn't be any food on a weight loss plan that is cheating, quantity and planning is the key! NOW IF I CAN ONLY TAKE MY OWN ADVICE!!:eek:

Anita Latte
March 21st, 2011, 10:35 AM
I don't cheat.

I don't consider myself on a diet though so it's impossible to cheat.

There have been a handful of times when I have successfully lost weight and approached a more healthy level of fitness. I did this with somewhat extreme eating and doing hated gym exercises. What I did was not sustainable...I have determined to change...to do something that is sustainable...

I don't label food as "good" or "bad"...I adjust my eating and physical activity to learn to incorporate movie popcorn, holiday eating, restaurant food, and other higher calorie food into my days or weeks so that they don't cause a lasting weight gain...I focus on things like not eating out of boredom, not eating out of routine, stop eating when I'm full, etc...and generally listening to what really sounds good (because I've learned that some foods, while I THINK they sound good, they don't make me feel good later)...eat a rainbow of food and other rules of thumb to provide myself with the nutrients I need through a variety of food choices.

So far, so good for me. But everyone has to discover their own path to the goal of healthy and fit.

Bellfree Bat
March 21st, 2011, 12:47 PM
I do not do a "Cheat Day" because I can really blow it but I do have a "Cheat Meal" once a week where I eat what I would like. If we go out to eat at a restaurant, I limit it to a 2 hr period and add wine and dessert if wanted. Helps me not to think about "dieting" once in a while. I can get obsessive about journaling/tracking food and exercise.

OnePsychLynne
March 21st, 2011, 12:59 PM
Thanks for the info everybody. I'm not sure what's going to be the best course for me so I really wanted to hear everyone's opinions about what has and hasn't worked.

I think if I ate those little things I wanted on a daily basis I wouldn't feel like I was getting anywhere. I did eat Taco Bell yesterday and was able to eat healthy with decent portions all day (Taco Bell is my achilles heel) and not go over my calorie limit. This is the first time I felt like I had a real chance at losing weight-all because of a silly app that does the real work for me :rolleyes:

I know I am not planning on restricting myself when the cruise comes, but neither am I planning on going for a free-for-all lol. I just want to be able to enjoy myself, which I don't now because I'm heavy and very self-conscious about it.

Anita Latte
March 21st, 2011, 10:30 PM
So I saw your post on another thread that said that you had 60 pounds to lose and had 76 weeks to cruise and were hoping to lose about a pound a week...

I just want to share with you...

This is very similar to my goals. I started my "program" weighing in at 205 or more with an ultimate goal of 137. I've been going for 6 months and I am down to around 175, give or take. I've been averaging a pound a week, give or take. I don't freak out on food, but I do have a high calorie burn with Zumba...

Like I posted before...I try to make what I consider to be healthier choices...really getting veggies (even more than fruit) in all kinds of varieties into my meals...healthy fats (I don't believe in skimping on the healthy fat, it is a falsehood to think that a super low fat diet is doing you any favors...you need to eat high quality fat in moderation and this will help you BIG TIME.)...watch the sugar intake...and otherwise strive for balance...a treat here and there...and really appreciate it when you do it.

I hope that in your "diet" you have figured out a physical activity that you can enjoy...the thing about Zumba that is super effective is the idea of Intermittent training...think Interval training...but instead of having the periods of alternating high and low heart rates be on regular intervals, intermittent training has the idea of random intervals, or irregular intervals because your heart rate will change with the music changes, including verses v. chorus and songs and song orders, etc.

You can recreate this intermittent training on any cardio equipment or through walking by increasing/decreasing your pace at irregular intervals...if you like to workout to music...you can just try to match the beat of the music...and change up your playlist...whatever you do, if you can figure out a way to get your heart rate up to a high intensity contrasted to a low intensity, you will throw your body into what can be called metabolic chaos and this will be the best thing that you can do to burn fat. Please research this, because this will take everything you have ever heard about "fat burning zones" and "cardio burning zones" to a new level. I'm a big researcher and I have shared my research, sources, and personal story on the Zumba thread that I started.

Having a long term goal is great, because it gives you plenty of time to get it all transitioned. You can learn to have fun with holidays and birthdays, etc., without compromising your ultimate goal...One aspect to my approach to this whole business of health and fitness is this...I consider my body to be out of balance...too much fat...too much weight....too little muscle, fitness, and conditioning...and now I am just doing what I need to do in order for my body to get back into balance...and my body is responding...it is losing fat and building muscle...you mental thought process has a big impact...I talked about this too in my thread...if you are patient and continue on the path...your body will respond...it can be frustrating...because there will be times when you just wish you could be done...but it will also be self motivating as you require new clothing, etc., because of how your body is changing shape.

I just hope to encourage you, because you really do have a realistic goal...you have given yourself plenty of time to achieve it...and it should not be a major hardship if you can find a physical activity that you can enjoy...I wish you all the best in your pursuit!

OnePsychLynne
March 21st, 2011, 11:10 PM
Wow! Thank you so much for your words of encouragement. This is a whole new experience for me. Usually my idea of a weight loss plan is to starve myself for a few days, get on the scales, get mad because I didn't lose 5 pounds, give up and continue eating what I wanted. Now I've told myself, "It's okay to take your time...if you really want something, eat it and try to arrange the rest of your meals accordingly". Sometimes it is so hard to retrain old habits :rolleyes:

I've already decided I will only weigh in once a week. Any more than that and I'll set myself up for disappointment. Any less and I'm just being avoidant. And I'm a procrastinator by nature, so it's easy for me to say "I'll start tomorrow." It's nice to know there are others out there like me trying to make a difference in their own lives, one day at a time.

I'm definitely going to have to keep looking for an exercise that suits me. I walk sometimes, but usually only 20 minutes at a time. At least if I can do that a couple of times a day, it's a start :)

Hypermommy
March 22nd, 2011, 06:02 AM
I'm not sure I'd call it a cheat exactly. And I'm not 100% sure I'm the one to be taking advice from because I've only lost about 20 lbs or so and gained about 4 back last week but.........

I think the important thing to remember is that it's not a diet. At least not for me it isn't. Oh sure, I could go on a crash diet and if I stuck with it long enough I'd get the rest of these 100 lbs off of me. But then I'd go back to eating like I did and that would put me right back where it's put me now. For me, I'm trying to make a lifestyle change. Now, I know that's a trite and overused phrase but it's really true. I want to change the way I think about food and eating. The super sugary or salty (my weakness) and fatty foods are treats, not staples. And I look at them as that. The other day I went out to lunch at Cracker Barrel with a friend. I decided to order mostly healthy stuff but I just HAD to have the fried okra (can't have country cooking without that IMO). The first piece I put in my mouth, I think my friend must have thought I'd lost my mind. I just closed my eyes and thoroughly concentrated on how wonderful it tasted. I absolutely enjoyed it, everything about it -- the texture, the taste, etc. And I think that's important. When you let yourself "cheat" and have something that you wouldn't normally have, it's important to go ahead and fully give into the pleasure that is that particular bit of food. Fully enjoy everything about it. Then, when you're done, you feel satisfied. And you don't let yourself feel guilty because you know you didn't break your diet but let yourself enjoy a rare treat.

Then comes the part about regaining control over your eating and making sure that the treat doesn't become a regular thing like it used to be. With me, it's burgers and fries. I've eaten them just about every day for years and years. Nowadays I'll let myself enjoy the occasional burger and really enjoy it. But then I'm back to salads and veggies. And I don't feel bad that I had it. Because if this is going to be a lifestyle change I have to recognize that sometimes I'm going to eat for the pleasure of it.

Okay, for someone that maybe shouldn't be giving advice I seem to be rather long-winded about it. Please forgive me. Hope it helped somehow.

OnePsychLynne
March 23rd, 2011, 05:48 PM
Sorry I didn't post sooner. I've been super busy at the hospital and school is killing me! Hypermommy...it was so funny to read the part about certain foods tasting better somehow. I thought it was just me! When I was eating my tacos the other day I was thinking 'I don't remember them being THIS good.' And the same thing happened when I ate pretzel M&Ms. I guess maybe it really is because we're kind of re-discovering those foods we love but were eating just to fill up and not actually tasting them. I'm on day five and I haven't gone over my calorie allowance once (yay)!

cruisin'tex
March 24th, 2011, 07:25 AM
Do you incorporate a cheat day into your diet regimen to help you get over your cravings and get refocused on your diet and goals?

If so, what do you do? If not, why?

I'm not sure I should be asking the question four days into my own diet, but here it is anyway. Thanks everybody!:D

Absolutely!

Hypermommy
March 24th, 2011, 02:03 PM
Sorry I didn't post sooner. I've been super busy at the hospital and school is killing me! Hypermommy...it was so funny to read the part about certain foods tasting better somehow. I thought it was just me! When I was eating my tacos the other day I was thinking 'I don't remember them being THIS good.' And the same thing happened when I ate pretzel M&Ms. I guess maybe it really is because we're kind of re-discovering those foods we love but were eating just to fill up and not actually tasting them. I'm on day five and I haven't gone over my calorie allowance once (yay)!

ExACTly! You know now that you say it like that (loving the "I don't remember it being THIS good") it got me to thinking about how different foods have different values. We always concentrate on the nutritional value of foods when trying to lose weight but I think we lose sight of the other aspects of eating like truly experiencing and enjoying the taste and texture, etc.

Not sure I'd call it cheating, but since I'm not dieting but am instead changing the way I think about food, then I'm definitely going to appreciate the value food has ... all of it. Then maybe I can think about it like I try to so many other aspects of my life... everything's okay in moderation.

And congrats on not going over your calorie allowance! :D

Anita Latte
March 24th, 2011, 09:14 PM
since I'm not dieting but am instead changing the way I think about food, then I'm definitely going to appreciate the value food has ... all of it.

If you enjoy reading...I highly recommend the book "The Tenth Muse: My Life in Food" by Judith Jones. It was in the cookbook section of my local library...but it isn't really a cookbook...it is more like a memoir. Jones was an editor and she was the lady that was responsible for Knopp deciding to publish Julia Child's collaborative cookbook "Mastering the Art of French Cooking" among many others.

The book is perspective on food in general...especially the development of American's relationship with food and cooking. If you are seeking to find maximum enjoyment from food and to think of it, not only as fuel for your body, but in a sense, food for your soul, nourishing to both spirit and body, then you will benefit from Jones' memories and viewpoint.

Then maybe I can think about it like I try to so many other aspects of my life... everything's okay in moderation.

It takes a long time to get this down IMO, but this is what I believe. Balance is the key...nothing is bad or good really...it is all just fat, protein, and carbs...and you have to figure out how to balance it all out so that you have a decent proportion of each to the other, whether daily or weekly.

And congrats on not going over your calorie allowance! :D

I second this! wtg!

OnePsychLynne
March 25th, 2011, 06:42 AM
Today was my weigh day and I'm happy to report that I lost exactly one pound:D

I bought a Boston Market family meal yesterday, not because I wanted it so much but because I'd had a really horrible day at work and didn't want to cook. There was a lot of yummy sides but I only portioned out 1/4 cup of each one so I could have them and not go overboard. When I got to the meat I just cut what I thought looked like a deck of cards size and then thought if I'm going to do this I'm going to do it right so I ordered a food scale from Amazon :rolleyes: Now I'll know I have three oz. for sure ;)

Hypermommy
March 25th, 2011, 08:11 AM
If you enjoy reading...I highly recommend the book "The Tenth Muse: My Life in Food" by Judith Jones. It was in the cookbook section of my local library...but it isn't really a cookbook...it is more like a memoir. Jones was an editor and she was the lady that was responsible for Knopp deciding to publish Julia Child's collaborative cookbook "Mastering the Art of French Cooking" among many others.

The book is perspective on food in general...especially the development of American's relationship with food and cooking. If you are seeking to find maximum enjoyment from food and to think of it, not only as fuel for your body, but in a sense, food for your soul, nourishing to both spirit and body, then you will benefit from Jones' memories and viewpoint.

This sounds like it'd be a great read! Thanks -- I'll have to see if our sorry little county library has it and if not I'll find it somewhere. Thanks!!

Today was my weigh day and I'm happy to report that I lost exactly one pound:D
<snipped text>
When I got to the meat I just cut what I thought looked like a deck of cards size and then thought if I'm going to do this I'm going to do it right so I ordered a food scale from Amazon :rolleyes: Now I'll know I have three oz. for sure ;)

Congrats on the loss!!!

Personally, I prefer estimating the size of a deck of cards to weighing. The way I figure it, I'm not dieting but changing the way I think about / relate to food. So since I know I'm not going to carry a food scale around with me for the rest of my life, I'll learn to do the size estimating thing. And since a deck of cards is something I'm familiar with, it's useful.

Now I remember hearing that for meats, but does anyone else have visual/size estimates they use for other things like veggies or rice or stuff like that (love rice!)?

Lvs2Cruise2
March 25th, 2011, 07:40 PM
Hi All.. Don't know if anyone is familiar with "The Biggest Loser".. but Bob Harper (one of the trainers) preaches an 80/20 method. He says if you are stellar 80% of the time, and allow tiny cheats 20% of the time, it's much easier to stay on track. You may not lose as quickly, but by allowing yourself little indulgences you don't allow yourself to feel deprived.

Love all the support everyone gives each other on this thread!! Happy cruising!

SusieV
March 26th, 2011, 09:11 PM
No. Who am I really cheating? Only myself.

What I do instead is come up with a healthy substitute for my favourite things. Talk about not feeling deprived! I haven't had real French fries in more than a year. When I want fries, I make them; out of butternut squash. I haven't had "real" cheesecake in more than a year, but I have a really awesome recipe for NY style cheesecake that tastes almost like the real thing.

See, if you build in "cheats", your portions may still be way out of whack, and the damage you do on the cheat days may undo all your hard work the rest of the time. It's just not worth it. Moderation is a difficult thing- eating large portions is what got most of us to where we are. I'd rather just build in new healthy habits.

With great substitutes for my cravings, I'm not missing out on anything. I post my recipes on my blog at http://stomach-rumblings.blogspot.com if you're interested.

kellbellscruise
April 3rd, 2011, 08:07 PM
Hi all. I pretty well follow Atkins for the most part. It did allow me to take off the initial 25lbs last year. I would guess I allow a cheat day about every 2 1/2 - 3 weeks. I dont really eat the sweets but will eat some pizza and popcorn and things like that. It usually seemed to keep from reaching any stalls. ANd I also find that when I am craving the sweets (which is usally brought on by carbs) I eat some peanut butter.

KrisMusc313
April 13th, 2011, 03:29 PM
ive been on WW since sept 09. i "cheat" on my weigh in day. so when i weigh in on sunday (it used to be monday but had to change due to work) i "cheat" if i have been on point all week and see a loss.

by "cheat" i mean- ill have a bagel with cream cheese for breakfast (it is my favorite food and my biggest weakness. i see if i tell myself i cant have any then i fail but knowing i cant look forward to it on sunday helps) also ill have a dinner of my choice and not weigh and portion everything. i still try to listen to my hunger signs to tell me when i am full.

i think having a cheat day helps. it keeps me from depriving myself and feeling like i am on a diet.

HTH!

huntforoil
May 8th, 2011, 07:44 PM
Hi All.. Don't know if anyone is familiar with "The Biggest Loser".. but Bob Harper (one of the trainers) preaches an 80/20 method. He says if you are stellar 80% of the time, and allow tiny cheats 20% of the time, it's much easier to stay on track. You may not lose as quickly, but by allowing yourself little indulgences you don't allow yourself to feel deprived.

Love all the support everyone gives each other on this thread!! Happy cruising!

I'm a big fan of the Biggest Loser and when I am trying to lose weight I follow this and it works for me. I eat very healthy for 6 days and on the 7th day I usually have something like a pizza and maybe some ice cream. I usually only have half of a medium pizza but it is more than enough to satisfy my cravings. It's also something to look forward to after a week of eating healthy. Bob also said doing that gives your metabolism a little kick start as eating healthy non stop can slow it down while trying to lose weight. It's worked very well for me. The key is to eat that cheat meal and immediately get back on track. The people it doesn't work for are the ones that can't just eat one cheat meal without getting off track and it turning into a binge fest.

sherilyn70
May 10th, 2011, 06:44 PM
I do have cheat days. I even have cheat weeks. This is a permanent lifestyle change for me and not a deprivation plan... I have no intentions of blocking out some of the things I love forever so I just learn how to incorporate them into my plan. I lost 87 pounds pounds from March 2010 to February 2011 and then I went on my cruise in the Southern Caribbean where I allowed myself to enjoy whatever I wanted for 10 days (my birthday and valentines day surrounded the cruise dates). I did have a temporary gain of 10 pounds back but took it all back off in the following two weeks. I've decided to just maintain for a while... but even in doing that I've lost another 5 pounds. I also took 1 week off in August for another vacation. I still have family celebrations and dinners on several occasions and did the holidays.

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v373/sherilyn70/beforeandafter3.jpg

I hope to have lost the last 20 pounds by the time I go on my next cruise but I'm not pushing myself too hard. :)

shay30
May 10th, 2011, 08:30 PM
I don't cheat.

I don't consider myself on a diet though so it's impossible to cheat.

There have been a handful of times when I have successfully lost weight and approached a more healthy level of fitness. I did this with somewhat extreme eating and doing hated gym exercises. What I did was not sustainable...I have determined to change...to do something that is sustainable...

I don't label food as "good" or "bad"...I adjust my eating and physical activity to learn to incorporate movie popcorn, holiday eating, restaurant food, and other higher calorie food into my days or weeks so that they don't cause a lasting weight gain...I focus on things like not eating out of boredom, not eating out of routine, stop eating when I'm full, etc...and generally listening to what really sounds good (because I've learned that some foods, while I THINK they sound good, they don't make me feel good later)...eat a rainbow of food and other rules of thumb to provide myself with the nutrients I need through a variety of food choices.

So far, so good for me. But everyone has to discover their own path to the goal of healthy and fit.
I totally agree with this. I'm not on a diet just eat healthier and in moderation. I also exercise @ least 1 hour or more 6 days a week.

Jan_In_Maine
May 12th, 2011, 03:19 PM
I keep track of my food on sparkpeople.com - it has been a life saver. I am down 46# from my heaviest. I've been known to gain some back, but have realized that this time it has to be and is a lifestyle change. I now look at every day is being a new way of life of being healthy.

I do have a "cheat day", which is Friday and is also "date night" with my DH. We go out to dinner and I have roasted vegetables, wonderful chicken with spinich, tomatoes & a little cheese. I also have a great salad with the dressing on the side. Two appletini's :eek: and we split a very small dessert. Funny how I can eat it and still stay within the upper level of my calorie count .... I look forward to it all week!:D Jan

starla86l87
May 19th, 2011, 09:28 PM
Wow! Thank you so much for your words of encouragement. This is a whole new experience for me. Usually my idea of a weight loss plan is to starve myself for a few days, get on the scales, get mad because I didn't lose 5 pounds, give up and continue eating what I wanted. Now I've told myself, "It's okay to take your time...if you really want something, eat it and try to arrange the rest of your meals accordingly". Sometimes it is so hard to retrain old habits :rolleyes:

I've already decided I will only weigh in once a week. Any more than that and I'll set myself up for disappointment. Any less and I'm just being avoidant. And I'm a procrastinator by nature, so it's easy for me to say "I'll start tomorrow." It's nice to know there are others out there like me trying to make a difference in their own lives, one day at a time.

I'm definitely going to have to keep looking for an exercise that suits me. I walk sometimes, but usually only 20 minutes at a time. At least if I can do that a couple of times a day, it's a start :)
Good luck! You can do it.

As far as "cheat days" - don't incorporate them into your diet, because if you have something like a set "cheat day" you will cheat, even if you're not truly craving it, because you've already justified it in your mind! Instead, learn how to indulge selectively, and in a way that gets you the gratification you need from the foods you crave without over-indulging or sliding down the slippery "well, I already screwed up today, and today's a waste so I'll eat whatever I want for the rest of the day, dagnabbit!" slope (at least, that's the slope I slide down if I'm not careful). I found this article to be really useful and on-point: http://www.fitnessmagazine.com/weight-loss/eating-help/control-cravings/how-to-control-cravings/ (note, it doesn't end on the first page... I didn't see the link at the bottom of pt. 1 at first and was all, "where's the rest of the article?! There was more in the magazine!!) But, the message at base is, don't deprive yourself! Deprivation/denial of things we eventually eat it, AND more of it than we would have if we'd just indulged a little in the first place - there are a number of studies to this effect.

Also, joining a (free!) site to keep track of what you eat and the workouts that you do can be super helpful - both in keeping you honest with yourself AND giving you a community of people who have similar fitness goals (they'll suggest some when you enter goals, current weight, when your goal is, etc.) that can help out and support you when you're feeling down about things - I like http://www.sparkpeople.com. It's also useful insofar as you can set your current weight, goal weight, and date by which you want to reach your goal weight, and tell you how many calories you should eat/how many to burn per day to get there (and you can adjust based on how much you want to work out).

Good luck! I know you'll get it! Also, sorry if this is repetitive; I didn't read every single post before writing this.

KP