Today is a rest day – THANK GOODNESS! I’m not too sore, but just need a break. I love rest days. However, they’re not to be confused with my cheat days. Yesterday I indulged and today I’ll get to put my feet up (well as much as you can put your feet up with an 18-month old running around.)
For the last several months, I’ve had cheat days. It’s one day of the week where I allow myself to eat a treat (or a few.) I feel like it’s a reward for the hard work I’ve put in. And let’s be serious, what the heck is the point of living if you’re constantly on a diet and always depriving yourself? I say, have a cheat day.Enjoy it and don’t feel guilty.
My cheat days consists of a couple of glasses of wine (or beer), maybe some chocolate and then something fun for supper or lunch. And for all you people out there who are thinking: “wow, that’s totally going to mess up her training and weight-loss!” I tell you this: I do not care. Let me reiterate: I DO NOT CARE. If I’m one of the lucky ones that live to the age of 80.4 (the age Stats Canada says is average) do you really think reflections of my life will be not sticking to strict healthy eating EVERY day? That I’ll sit there and say, “Gee, I can’t believe I let myself have a chocolate bar. I know it was that damn chocolate bar that would finally did me in.” No. I won’t. In fact, I learned from a pretty cool lady that sometimes you should just do what YOU want to do (so long as it doesn’t hurt anyone else, that is.)
My grandmother (Mimi) was famous for eating an egg a day. Poached. Runny. (I know, sick right?) Now, when she had some cholesteral issues, the doctors suggested that she lay off the eggs. At this point, my grandmother was in her 80’s. She totally disregarded the advice and lived until 94.
Now, I’m not saying go crazy and have Wendy’s 3x that day; or eat a whole container of Häagen-Dazs.What I am saying is to live a little. Yes, yes – do so in moderation. And if you find yourself falling off the wagon after a cheat day it’s not the end of the world. It’s hard to keep cheats to one day, cause let’s be honest after a cheat day (e.g.: my birthday) it’s hard to resist that last piece of cake. Ask yourself “if I eat this cake, I’ll have to work just a little bit harder, am I willing to do that?” OR you can say “F— it.” And do it anyway. Whatever you decide, just be sure it makes YOU happy. Don’t worry about those people around you who think that because they resisted something that they’re somehow stronger. Or the elitist who will put you down because heaven-forbid you put REFINED sugar in your body. The actions and consequences are yours to own. Eg: you see this double chin, yep, that was McDonalds every day through uni. Oh the muffin top? Beers Thursday through Sunday around the same time… etc…
Here is something I found on Fitsugar.com:
For those of you who exercise regularly and eat a healthy balanced diet, have you ever considered giving yourself a “break” day? A day where you throw caution to the wind regarding your wellness regimen and allow yourself to cheat a bit? If you’re in the midst of trying to curb your sugar addiction or are on some sort of detox, I’m not talking to you. I’m talking to those who genuinely deserve a health-cation. You health-conscious individuals may want to give yourself a cheat day each week. Here’s why.
- Recovery: If your workout schedule includes lots of intense cardio or weight training, a rest day allows your muscles to recover and recuperate, setting you up for another week of workouts. Go for a massage, jump in the hot tub, or pay a visit to the sauna or steam room to help improve circulation.
- The Pleasure Principle: I’m all about everything in moderation, so if you’re eating healthy and exercising, indulging with a tiny sweet treat or a glass of wine here and there isn’t going to throw you off the wellness wagon. However, if you need to harness your cravings, take a page out of celeb-trainer Harley Pasternak’s playbook and schedule a cheat day. Pasternak thinks cheat days keep you from feeling deprived since they give you something to look forward to. Sandra Bullock is a fan of weekly cheat days, and Pasternak incorporated a cheat day into his 5-Factor Diet used byJessica Simpson and Eva Mendes.
- Dieters Gone Wild: The 4-Hour Body author Tim Ferris labels his Saturday cheat day “Dieters Gone Wild.” Taking the cheat day to the next level, Ferris gorges on all of his vices one day a week so for the other six he doesn’t even want to look at them. By dramatically spiking your caloric intake, Ferris says you can increase fat loss by ensuring your “metabolic rate doesn’t down-regulate from extended caloric restriction.” I’ll take his word for it (is it Saturday yet?!). But I do know how my body operates, and you know what’s happening with your body too; so if one day of total indulgence is too much for you, have some cake and eat it too — just don’t overdo it.
- R ‘n’ R: Sleeping in and staying in your pjs until noon once a week is good for the mind, body, and soul — I can’t stress enough how important sleep is. If your body just naturally wakes up early, try going to bed earlier on a Friday or Saturday night to clock some extra hours of snoozing on the weekend. It’s a great way to give yourself a kick start before the next week of work begins.