Keeping the Weight Off For LIFE: Incorporating a Planned Weekly Cheat Day

Health
Keeping the Weight Off For LIFE: Incorporating a Planned Weekly Cheat Day
We live in a magic pill society. People demand immediate results, and all of their attention is focused on the short-term. We want the perfect weight loss diet that delivers in under two weeks, guaranteed. The result is an inevitable vicious cycle of yo-yo dieting. In order to lose weight and keep it off for good you have to make a commitment to treat eating the right foods as a lifestyle, not a two week (or two month) crash course.
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By being completely honest with yourself and planning your cheat days ahead of time, you will circumvent the major obstacles that cause most people to fail.

By being completely honest with yourself and planning your cheat days ahead of time, you will circumvent the major obstacles that cause most people to fail.

Structuring a Diet For Long-term Success

The key to long-term success is planning ahead. By following these dietary guidelines, you will lose weight and keep it off.

Guideline #1: Avoid ALL White Carbohydrates

Eliminate any carbohydrate that is (or can be) white. For example, all bread, rice, pasta, cereal, fried foods with breading, and tortillas are not permitted on the diet.

Guideline #2: Stick to the Same Meals

This diet isn’t designed to be exciting, but designed to be extremely effective. After you get settled in and comfortable with this eating style, you can expand and try out different recipes, but for now, focus on eating the same few meals over and over. This strategy will help you consistently eat healthy and structure a good routine.

Choose one food from each of the groups below to construct your meals. There is an asterisk next to the foods most conducive for fat loss.

Proteins

*Egg whites with 1-2 whole eggs (if organic, 2-5 whole eggs with yolks)
*Chicken breast or thigh
*Beef (preferably grass-fed)
*Fish
Pork

Legumes

*Lentils
*Black beans
Pinto beans
Red beans

Vegetables

*Spinach
*Mixed vegetables (including broccoli, cauliflower, or any cruciferous vegetables)
*Sauerkraut, kimchee
Asparagus
Peas
Broccoli
Green beans

You are allowed to eat as much of the above foods as you wish, but focus on keeping it simple: create two to three different meals and repeat them each week.

If you eat out, most restaurants can substitute fries or potatoes for a side of steamed vegetables. After swapping out the rice for veggies, Mexican food can be a great option too.

Be sure to eat within an hour of waking and space out your meals approximately four hours apart.

Guideline #3: Watch What You Drink

You are allowed (and encouraged) to drink massive quantities of water and unsweetened tea on this diet. Coffee is also allowed, but limit yourself to two tablespoons of cream.

Milk (including soy, almond, and coconut) is not allowed on this diet. Regular soft drinks are also off limits. You may drink diet soda, but only allow yourself one 12oz can per day.

No alcohol on this diet (except for your cheat day). If you refuse to quit drinking alcohol, you will have a tough time losing any weight.

Guideline #4: Don’t Eat Fruit

Save fruit for your one day off. Fruit is high in sugar and not conducive to weight loss. While fruit is certainly healthy, we don’t need to eat it every day. The exception to this rule is tomatoes and avocadoes. If you do include avocado in your diet, limit your consumption to ½ an avocado per day.

Guideline #5: Take One Day Off Per Week (IMPORTANT)

One day per week you are allowed to eat whatever you want.

Now, before you embark on a day of gluttonous enjoyment, be sure to follow the following tips for this special day.
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There are NO limits or boundaries on what you can eat on your cheat day.
  1. There are NO limits or boundaries on what you can eat on your cheat day
  2. There is NO calorie counting on this diet, let alone on your cheat day
  3. Start this diet a minimum of 5 days before your designated cheat day
  4. Plan your cheat day in advance (the same day every week is recommended)
There are serious benefits to planned cheating on a diet. Firstly, you will dramatically spike your calorie intake for the day and keep your metabolism working hard. This prevents your body from going into starvation mode and will actually help you lose fat. Secondly, you will break the monotony and keep yourself sane. By letting it out of your system all in one go, you eliminate the temptation to cheat on other days. This is why you are encouraged to eat as much junk as you want.

On top of the above guidelines for your cheat day, you can also minimize damage with the following tips:

Cheat day Tip #1:

Have a good breakfast. Tim Ferriss will tell you a good cheat day is founded on a solid breakfast. Make sure you have the recommended 30g of protein in a slow-carb breakfast before you begin your cheat day. You can treat yourself for this breakfast, though. Instead of standard scramble, try something new like a slow-carb breakfast burrito!

Cheat day Tip #2

Drink a cup of coffee or take a caffeine pill with your first meal and consume a greens supplement (i.e. AthleticGreens)

Cheat day Tip #3:

Perform a brief exercise session before your first junk meal. We recommend an easy bodyweight workout for this exercise session.

Other Tips to Ensure Success

  • Remove any unapproved foods from your house. Don’t tax your willpower! By removing any unapproved foods from the house, you will eliminate the urge to cheat on your diet.
  • Eat out on your cheat day. You will avoid keeping any extra unapproved foods around the house by doing this.
  • Drink A LOT of water. Most people don’t drink enough water.
  • Don’t weigh yourself on the scale every day. Choose one day a week to weigh yourself on the scale on an empty stomach.
  • Avoid artificial sweeteners. A common stumbling block for dieters is to overeat artificial sweeteners. Avoid Splenda and any other no calorie sweetener.
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