Is that after a prolonged periods of cheating (i.e) bad food you will be used to and in fact build up certain cravings to type of foods. Because different foods have different chemical reactions in the brain depending on your mood and emotions depends on what sort of food you can crave. Now once you’ve joined the gym, began an exercise program, purchased the correct supplementation for your goals you will find that nutrition will be an uphill battle. Now this is a battle that only the STRONGEST will survive, make no mistakes when it comes to results and transformations in the gym it really is at least 50% nutrition, 25% exercise and 25% supplementation. Now even though there are different importance placed upon each one there is no way you will succeed without on or the other.
Now let’s look at the situation, your exercising, got your supplements, no you’ve noticed that your nutrition is changing, but you’re finding it difficult to stay on track this is where you’re cheat day comes in handy. The fact is if you are able to stay on track long enough you will eventually break, this period usually comes about around the 6th day. So we plan for having 6 good days of nutrition straight without any fault followed by 1 day of freedom.
How to cheat (correctly):
This one day can take place in a variety of methods depending on the training level you are at. They are as follows:
- 6 hour day (recommended for beginners)
- 4 hour day (recommended for intermediate trainers)
- 1 meal per week (recommended for advanced trainers)
- 1 meal per month (recommended for elite athletes and professionals)
- Have a selection of small cheat meals spread out through-out the week, with no more than three per week (recommended for trainers who train at a high level of frequent intensity)
There is some basic psychology behind the ‘cheat day’ the idea is that you will have been so good during the week and exercised so much, you’ve gotten noticeable results (anywhere between 1kg-3kg) you will feel one of two ways, the first is that you will feel so good and feel so much momentum that you will not want to cheat. Secondly is that you will desire these forbidden foods so much that you will absolutely gauge yourself silly so that you might actually feel sick and begin to not desire these foods on such a greater scale.
You have to keep in mind that the more clean your food intake is and more nutritious it is that the more your body will desire these foods and reject the bad foods. Let me explain at this point that my nutrition is basically comprised of lean meats, vegetarian proteins, low GI vegetables and fruits, nuts, complex carbohydrates, no dairy and very low fructose.
No having said that if I go off the rails which I do so on my cheat day if I go off too far, I can promise you that I do not feel good. I actually feel sick. This is my body’s way of telling me that it is not used to what I’m making it eat on my cheat day.
In fact you could even liken it to certain food intolerance. I am quite often unable to consume excessive amounts of fats and sugars. This works as a great deterrent as I have never enjoyed feeling sick and I don’t think anyone else has either.
I hope this has helped you better understand the emphasis behind having a free day and how it can actually HELP you achieve your goals.
- Purpose shop for your cheat days. If you don’t have the self-control then doesn’t have the bad food waiting around for you to have a weak moment.
- Plan your free days, is it when you’re going out? I prefer to save mine for special events and occasions.
- You will have to say no to some outings if you don’t think you have the self-control or you don’t want to be tempted. You will only be able to do this if you have prioritized yourself.
- Don’t over eat. Just because it is a cheat day doesn’t mean you have to clear the entire table. You can and should only eat until you are just full. Having said that on occasion it is okay to do that and by occasion I mean once every few months.
- Try the concept of having a cheat day that the only difference is over indulging in protein shakes (RTDs) and protein bars and or consumables. You might be surprized at the result. The fact that if you’re cheating is just over loading on these products instead of other foods which are heavy in Trans-fats and other evils you have then reached a whole new level of training.
Written by Adrian Ambrose