Making the Most of my ‘Cheat Day’

So it’s been one week since I started my journey towards a Happier, Healthier, More Fit Me, and I’d have to say that yesterday was one of my favourite days so far! My Cheat Day!

After hitting the gym for a 9:30am BodyAttack class, the rest of the day was spent having some quality family time. My husband, who has been working out-of-town for the past week, was finally able to join as we headed out for walk and to play at our neighbourhood park.

Since it was such a beautiful day, we decided to hit up Dairy Queen for a little ice cream afterwards. It just so happens that the Blizzard of the Month is Mint Oreo – my favourite! It’s a good thing I really, really, really enjoyed it, because when I looked up the nutritional information, it was pretty scary!

Total Calories – 680

Total Fat – 25 g

Sugar – 79 g

Protein – 13 g

All I can say about that is YIKES! Won’t be having one of those again for a while!

But, wait…it doesn’t end there! Just to give you a little background info, my husband is a bit of a pig! He doesn’t look like it, but he is! He’s the kind of guy who thinks everything is single serving – the pint of Hagen Dazs, the giant bag of potato chips…anything! I keep telling him that it’s going to catch up with him some day and that he’s lucky he has a very physically demanding job, but he doesn’t seem to care!

So, to finish off my cheat day, we had McDonald’s for dinner. And sadly, I enjoyed every bite of the 6 nuggets and medium fries, and every sip of the medium coke!

Total Calories: 990

Total Fat: 37 g

Sugar: 68 g

Holy unhealthy! Definitely won’t be eating there again for a while either!But, as disgusting as my cheat day was, I absolutely loved it! So yummy!

What are your thoughts on cheat days? I did a little digging around on the internet and found that most healthy eating/diet plans recommend them, however, not to the extent I did.

According to this article from SHAPE magazine, cheat days are okay as long as you:

(1) Stick to your regular healthy eating plan 90% of the time  For me, since I have 3 meals and 2 snacks each day, eating healthy 90% of the time means that I can have 2 cheat meals and one cheat snack each week. I like the idea of 90:10- it’s really simple to figure out and seems do-able. And although my cheat day fits in this equation, I’d have to say I went a little overboard on the number of extra calories consumed!

(2) Work hard enough the rest of the week to earn it. They say that if you eat the target number of healthy meals and snacks each week that you deserve the reward of a cheat day. Again, for me this means eating 19 healthy meals and 13 healthy snacks each week. It also means getting in all my workouts each week too.

(3) Plan it. I think this is a really important part of the whole cheat day thing. If I know I’m going out for dinner or meeting a friend for a chai latte, I need to use that as my cheat meal/snack and make sure I still stick to the 90:10 ratio the rest of that week.

So, in my opinion ‘cheat days’ are good. I had no trouble sticking with my healthy eating plan all week, and totally felt like I had earned the Blizzard for all of my hard work. The McDonald’s….well, that’s another thing…totally unnecessary! 🙂

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