Cheat day: Yay or nay?



  • Cynsonya
    Cynsonya Posts: 668 Member
    I'm gonna have to say no. I used to be all for them but after a recent lung infection and a prescription of Prednisone one cheat day turned into 9. Never again. Though the meds certainly didn't help. They make me ravenous.
  • DrEnalg
    DrEnalg Posts: 650 Member
    xSPICYx wrote: »
    Or be me and make everyday a cheat day :-D

    That's what I do. If I haven't arranged my day so that I can have some ice cream and candy, I've done something wrong.
  • Wetcoaster
    Wetcoaster Posts: 1,789 Member
    There is a new Alan Aragon interview in which he gives his opnions

    What are your thoughts on refeeds vs. cheat meals?

    Refeeds can be helpful in situations of prolonged dieting, especially in carb-restricted conditions. Refeeds are typically more extensive than simple, non-linear carbohydrate intake through the week. I don’t subscribe to any significant or lasting hormonal normalization occurring from refeeds. Their ability to sustain dietary adherence and prevent major drops in training performance are the most concrete merits they have. They’re not necessary or beneficial for all dieting scenarios though, especially ones where carb reduction is not severe. As for cheat meals, these haphazard “*##* it all” meals (or entire days) are a common crutch for people spending most of the week enduring a diet that tastes like cardboard and #*#. If you eat the foods you really like every day, and you allow regular consumption of indulgences (fit them in!) if that’s your thing, this eliminates the need for “cheat” meals in order to balance out your brutally tasteless diet.

    What about diet breaks? It seems that every so often a new buzz word pops up and throws everyone for a loop. Diet breaks seem to be something that more people are talking about lately. What are your thoughts?

    I first heard the concept of diet breaks discussed by Dan Duchaine in the mid-90’s. The guy who really effectively brought the concept to the public was Lyle McDonald, who has a nice, detailed chapter on diet breaks in his highly underrated book, A Guide to Flexible Dieting. My take on the diet break (1-2 weeks off of the formal plan) should occur every 1-2 months. Yes, there’s a good bit of variation built into that guideline, as it should be. Diet breaks ideally should be done on an autoregulated basis. In my view, a diet break’s main purpose is to give the dieter a psychological break, if needed. Spending some time in a period where prior maintenance calories are resumed while significantly loosening up on, or completely abandoning the structure of the formal diet can actually help long-term long-term weight loss progress. In contest prep scenarios, a more careful & conservative approach to diet breaks should be employed.
  • brb_2013
    brb_2013 Posts: 1,197 Member
    I don't have cheat days or meals, but I make room for treat foods. Luna bars are a sweet treat that fits my day. I also plan baking this weekend, but to make that work we'll have salads with chicken for dinner versus a heavy dinner with potatoes or beef or noodles. I didn't log this weekend, but my partner and I shared a chocolate bar. Maybe 250 cals and it was just fine. No binge cause the other half was gone!
    With the brownies I want to make, I will make sure to prelog the serving size and freeze the excess for another weekend.
  • pzarnosky
    pzarnosky Posts: 256 Member
    I eat 1500 calories a day, am actively training for a 25K and eat back about 65 calories back for every mile I run. If there was a "diet" i aligned to it would be the mediterranean diet as my food choices follow that pyramid pretty closely. I've lost 30lbs. I also eat anything and everything I want on Sundays. I know it has probably slowed my weightloss, but I'm not really in a rush. For me it's easier to meal prep and only eat that stuff because I don't keep junk food around. Whatever I and my boyfriend (he also eats extremely well during the week) don't finish on the weekend gets either tossed or usually given to our friends/family.
  • Asher_Ethan
    Asher_Ethan Posts: 2,430 Member
    I usually give myself unlimited calories when I'm on vacation. Ill try and stay in maintains but it hardly ever happens. I usually log as much as I can and get back to the deficit when I get home.
  • Rick_Nelson81
    Rick_Nelson81 Posts: 205 Member
    My daily meals include 2-3 fruit servings, sometimes yogurt or cheese and sometimes I make a smoothie with bananas and walnuts. I don't crave the relatively unhealthy foods I used to, so I don't feel deprived enough to ruin my gains. I hope that everyone trying to lose weight can adopt a long-term solution where you don't think of certain foods as "cheating," but rather as "a bad idea." Just my preference, take from it what you will, I hope it helps someone.
  • N0easyway0ut
    N0easyway0ut Posts: 193 Member
    JoRocka wrote: »
    Nicks10x wrote: »
    I once read that cheat meals are actually good for you - as it keeps your body guess. When you have a cheat meal, your body goes into shock and works harder to digest and process the fats and carbs! anyone else heard this? for me, a cheat meal is something I look forward to... its kind of like a reward for being 'healthy' for the week! :)

    It's mentally satisfying and can help you keep on track from a physcological stand point- but in no way does it keep your body "guessing".

    that's just silly.

    Like I said previously - i'm no expert in this area and it was just something I read on I guess that's the whole point of these forums... it is to give opinions or express thoughts! :)
  • erimethia_fekre
    erimethia_fekre Posts: 317 Member
    edited March 2016
    Include the foods you consider on your cheat days into your diet now and there will be no need. Whenever I have a spare 200-300 calories for the day I always treat myself if my macros allow it. You just have to get into the moderation of it all.

    I wouldn't do cheat days period. More often than not people fall off the wagon by doing this.
  • Soopatt
    Soopatt Posts: 563 Member
    I have not lost for the past six weeks due to too many cheat meals. It has been reassuring in some respects because it has proved to me that maintenance is not going to be that bad after all (I have maintained my weight eating this way - it feels like I have eaten like a horse).

    Whatever I eat though - I force myself to log it - no matter how massive the meal or how embarrassed I might be for others to read about it. As long as I am logging and accountable, I am always in control of my choices.

    I am also pleased with myself for having tight days after big days. I find a big meal satisfying. I like to eat a big portion every now and then and it is the way I want to live my life - it makes me feel normal. It might not work for everyone, but I am happy to skip breakfast and dinner if it means having a blow out lunch on that day.

    I can eat 2 of these big lunches a week and still lose. I have been eating 4, so I have maintained.

    A big lunch (full restaurant portion and a dessert) is not a binge in my books, just delicious. When I picture bingeing I have in mind someone eating a whole block of cheese and a box of cereal mindlessly while weeping.

    I am as happy as a baby pig when I have a large lunch and I am delighted that I don't need to eat like a rabbit at every sitting to stay lean.
  • ingapilkyte
    ingapilkyte Posts: 1 Member
    I'm doing intermittent fasting coupled with regular workout just so I can have cheat meals everyday. It's quite difficult for me to prepare a proper meal due to the nature of my job. Given a choice though, I'd pick a well cooked nutritious meal over a cheat meal any day cos it helps to sustain the mind and body way longer.

    Hi, I am very new to IF so got to swap my training times from 5am to 5pm so I could feed myself straight after training. And I find it very anoying simply because gym is packed with people who comes to socialize instead of training and I end up having my main meal very late ...almost before the bed.
    So my question would do you find it?