Every journey will have its uphill battles and downhill cruises. We all will have those moments where our willpower won’t win and we will fall off the wagon. Since beginning I have learned several things not only about myself mentally but physically as well.

We all need a “cheat day” to reward ourselves for the hard work and sacrifices we have made. I have been planning one a week usually on the weekends so I have something to look forward to. My first cheat day didn’t go so well. Coordinating my cheat day with The Ohio State University’s Fiesta Bowl game. I bought my favorite chicken wings, pizza, and beer to celebrate a certain victory for the buckeyes.

I have to admit the first bite of pizza was amazing and the wings were divine. I had three large pieces of pizza and around 20 wings (I lost count after a while). I was on cloud nine for most of the day. The buckeyes won the game, I was eating my favorite foods, and life was good.

Later that night my stomach started its assault on the rest of me. I got very sick and felt awful. I quickly learned that my body was rejecting all of the grease and fat I had shoved in it all day. As my body has adjusted to the nutritious foods over the few weeks since starting, I learned that you don’t need to go crazy on cheat day. Cheat day isn’t about the amount of food you eat, but what it is. Also, your stomach is muscle. It will shrink and expand accordingly. However, if you spend all week shrinking it. It won’t expand with one meal and you will get sick.

Here are some of my cheat day tips:

  • Plan Ahead- the day before and after plan on having salads, soups, and simple vegetable filled meals.
  • Flush Your Body- eating foods high in sodium will make you retain water and weight. Make sure you are drinking plenty of water to flush the sodium out
  • Quality Over Quantity- eat the foods you crave, but eat small to average potions. Don’t go crazy
  • Remember Your Stomach- the day after your cheat day your stomach will be craving more food than normal. Keep healthy snacks on hand so you don’t feel starving.

So remember cheating is fine as long as you have a plan to get back on the wagon and keep driving!

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