Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Cheat Day? ... Why would you cheat yourself!

What do the words "healthy lifestyle" mean to you? Eating Right? Exercising? An all around effort to be healthy?

I think alot of people don't really understand what it means, while it probably means different things to different people I think there is common ground in most meanings. And I am not criticizing anyone in this post other than myself, I am guilty of everything I am writing about but I  also have started to evolve my train of thought on the subject.

In the past I would eat healthy 6 days a week and workout most of those days. Then the magical day 7 know as the "CHEAT DAY" would find itself on my front door step. I will be the first to admit I used to love that day! I would treat myself to anything I wanted for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. I would convince myself that what I was doing was OK, I worked out and watched what I ate all week for crying out loud! Things have changed for me, CHEAT DAYS and my goal of living a healthy lifestyle cannot coexist in my world. I hate the term and I hate the idea behind it. Who really would want to cheat themselves? Not me! Also why in the world are we rewarding ourselves with food?!  For me it has the same agenda as emotional eating, when bad things happen emotional eaters eat, so when we do good things we are supposed to eat also? This makes no sense to me, and I think it goes against the idea of a healthy LIFESTYLE. Why not reward yourself with a new shirt or a day at the spa, it could be anything other than food.

So the new me is done with cheat days, its no longer a word in my vocabulary. I don't eat healthy foods so that I can eat whatever I want on a certain day. I eat whatever I want on any day! I just happen to choose healthy food on most of those days because I have chosen to live a healthy lifestyle. That doesn't mean I cant eat junk food or fast food. In fact the other night I took my 8 year old cousin to see Toy Story 3, afterwards he wanted to go eat at Five Guys and I said ok.  I ate a cheeseburger, we split a order of fries, and I drank water. My meal had 1,150 calories. I knew exactly what I was eating and I knew exactly how many calories it had before I ate it, to me that is living a healthy lifestyle. I know the food was not healthy, but I also knew that I don't eat like that everyday. There was no emotional eating involved, I was in complete control. I have learned to distinguish between when I am really hungry and when my emotions tell me I am hungry. I am achieving a health lifestyle by my own choice.

For people who use the cheat days I am in no way talking down at you, like I said before I am just as guilty as anyone else. I just wanted to give a different point of view. I really do believe that a healthy lifestyle is what you make it, and in my case I just wanted to be honest with myself.

BOTTOM LINE:  Never cheat yourself


Foodie Mcbody said...

Awesome. You are doing it exactly right. I LOVE your attitude toward "cheating!"

So..... how was the movie?? :-)

~LORI~ said...

wow. very very very well said and i agree 100%. i spent TWO years going to exercise class 3-4 days a week and then when i went to buy my healthy groceries for the upcoming week, on the weekend, i would buy my "bad" food for the weekend or my "cheat" days....i WASTED TWO LONG YEARS of blood, sweat and tears for WHAT? only to ruin all my hard work of the week, on the weekends. i used to be SCARED for the weekends to come b/c of this behavior. i have since changed my attitude and my mental health. i now make it through the weekend continuing my healthy lifestyle and just what you said about the burger - i may have ONE item that is a little higher in calorie than normal but i don't even give a cheat meal, b/c that turns into cheat day and then cheat weekend. you said it best - why cheat yourself? you need to be so proud of yourself for what you have changed. i feel that the mental part is SOOOO much harder to change and you have done that. i am so excited for you and you help me stay on my journey as well. best wishes!
PS - five guys fries are my DEVIL :)

bonnie said...

I totally agree....why knowingly alter the healthy behavior that you've grown to change...To me a 'cheat day' is a step backwards. BUT everyone has different ways to get to their goals. To me even the term 'cheat' is already negative. If I'm going to let myself have an extra helping of something; or have a special piece of desert - just enjoy it; and work out a little harder to compensate for it. I'm not gonna call it a cheat. it's just life. it's a balance..

Roni said...

I TOTALLY agree! Plus the connotation of "cheat" infers you are on a diet and you aren't on a diet.. at least you shouldn't me!

You approached 5 Guys the same was I do.. you go in open eyed and conscious of your choices. Here's an old post I have about my strategy there.. http://ronisweigh.com/2010/02/my-strategy-to-beat-up-5-guys-its-not-what-youre-thinking.html

Megan said...

I agree! I might indulge a craving or have a meal that isn't 100% healthy, but the bottom line is knowing what you are eating and making health conscious decisions even when you are eating something that isn't the most health conscious.

karen said...

I belong to weight watchers. Saturdays is my way in day .On saturdays i cheat .I guess you could say i do it so i wont get board with being on weight watchers because in the past when i was on weight watchers i would lose 50 lbs and stop being on weight watchers because i got so tired of being on weight watcher.after reading your blog i think i am going to stop cheating my self out of making my dream come true with is to see my self skinny befor i die some day .Thank you so much for writing this post alan