9 Tips For Better Cheat Meals
When you go on a diet do you stick to it for a few weeks/months until you end up binging and quitting? Then you should consider trying flexible dieting. If the real solution to fat loss is calories in – calories out, then there’s no reason as to why you can’t eat “unhealthy” foods.
Tip 1: It’s a Cheat MEAL, Not Cheat DAY
This is a common rookie mistake. When people start dieting they’ll either try to have a cheat meal and end up binging all day or they think that cheat meal = cheat day. Just by eating a few too many calories a lot of people find their weight doesn’t change. There are many ways to address this issue (included in this article), but my general recommendation is to use the 85/15 rule. 85% of the things you eat should be “healthy” and 15% can be “cheat” foods. So if you eat 3 meals a day that means you can have some “cheat” foods every 2-3 days. Just make sure you don’t go overboard.
Tip 2: Have a Protein Shake or Eat Beforehand
Protein is one of the most filling foods with the lowest calories. If you drink a shake before a cheat meal of course you’ll have less room for the cheat meal. Then, for the overall day, you will have a lower calorie total.
Tip 3: Fast Until Your Cheat Meal
If you don’t eat breakfast cheat meals, then you could implement fasting on the day of your cheat meals to restrict calories. If done right this can help keep your calories the same as your other days. Here’s an example average restaurant meal: 1200 calories, 2 twinkies: 280 calories, average appetizer: 550 calories, this all puts me at 2030 calories. This is close to my personal daily calories.
Tip 4: Have Your Cheat Meal at the End of the Day
This is up to personal tastes, but for some people, if they have a cheat meal for breakfast then crap just hits the fan. They’ll usually end up binging for the whole day because they don’t know when to call it quits. If you’re one of these people just save it til the end of the day.
Tip 5: Share Your Meal With a Friend/Partner
This is a great tip because you can save some money while still getting a full meal. Most meals from restaurants have enough servings for 2 people. Most restaurant meals average ~1200 calories, which is a lot. By sharing with a friend/loved one you can split that in half to 600 and still get to enjoy a cheat meal.
Tip 6: Eat Your Cheat Meal on Leg Day
By having your cheat meal on leg days your body will be able to utilize the calories better. This is because leg days burn the most calories by far, the bigger the muscles the more calories burned.
Tip 7: Buy Your Snacks Individually
This is a tip that helps me and my fiancee. I buy twinkies by the individual package over getting an entire box of them. I know if I were to buy a box it would be too much temptation to eat all at once or later. If you don’t eat the whole box it will just sit there waiting to tempt you another time. Save the calories and regrets.
Tip 8: Plan Ahead
You shouldn’t wait until the last second, when you’re starving, to choose a cheat meal. Odds are if you are stupid hungry you’ll eat a stupid amount of food. Instead, plan earlier in the week where you want to go, eat, and have a plan ready. Benjamin Franklin put it best: “By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail.” Your goals won’t happen on their own, instead, put together a plan, follow it, and reap the results. Odds are you’ll know what’s best.
Tip 9: Eat Until You’re Full, Not Stuffed!
We’ve all eaten too much of a meal too fast, then you have to unbuckle the belt and take a little insulin nap. If you dive right into your meals gung-ho you’ll probably take in more food and calories than you’d like. Instead, eat slowly, chew every bite thoroughly, put the fork down, and keep inventory, eat until you’re 80% full.
The most important thing about this article is that the tips have to work to your specific scenario, which only you know. These are tips I’ve found are helpful for myself and my clients I hope you guys can find a method that works for you.
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