(Closed) Who allows themselves one cheat day a week?

posted 6 years ago in Fitness
Post # 3
1645 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: May 2010

I don’t allow myself a cheat day. I used to think that if I was going to eat one “bad” thing, then I might as well eat a bunch the same day, but then I realized that was just binge eating. I’ve already had a past struggle with disordered eating and I try to stay away from those habits.

When I was actively trying to lose weight (35 pounds, Jan to mid April) I tracked everything. If I indulged, I tracked it and still tried to stay in my daily net calorie allowance, changing my meals for the rest of the day to make up for it, or exercising. If I went over my calories, I went over. Tomorrow is a new day. It’s basically the same thing, allowing treats or indulging in higher calorie foods, but not limiting it to one day. If I did a cheat day, I tended to go way overboard and tell myself “it doesn’t count” but it does! I’d eat much more junk than I even really wanted to because it was my cheat day. Instead, I still indulge when I want to, and I went over now and then so I could eat foods I wanted to, but it was more balanced and I tracked it all, which helped keep me in line.

Now that I’m not actively losing, I indulge more often. I’m not tracking everything I eat, but I do try to balance things out during the day and throughout the week. Instead of tracking, I weigh myself daily. I fluctuate a lot from day to day (about 2-4 pounds) but as long as I stay in that range, I am happy. Weighing myself daily lets me track changes more quickly (a couple days in a row hitting the top end of my range) and then I adjust my eating a bit so I can continue to maintain. It helps keep the weight from sneaking back on. Weighing daily has actually helped me to be less obsessed about the exact number, since I see the trends and don’t beat myself up if I’m in my range.

I’m actually super proud of maintaining my weight for these last months. This winter I’m going to try and lose another 10-15, so I’ll be back to tracking everything I eat so I can lose the weight.

Post # 4
3830 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: November 1999

Ummm i sort of give myself cheat meals periodically. Like if i know i will be attending something where i’ll totally eat something horrendous, i make sure to eat much better the rest of the day and fit a work out in. 

I think its most important NOT to beat yourself up if you eat things that aren’t the best. 

Such as…yesterday i ate the worst pizza ever for dinner and a donut. BUt the rest of the day was good so when i tallied up my calories on MyFitnessPal i wasn’t over my limit that much actually. 

And so today i made sure to jog this morning and have been eating much better. 

I find when i have the mentality “crap well i already destroyed my diet why should i keep going?” i fail. But keeping the “whoops! i should try to be better next time” mentality helps me. 

And saying, something like every sunday i can eat whatever usually means you will binge that day. Not good!

Post # 5
8433 posts
Bumble Beekeeper
  • Wedding: August 2012

Usually I have one or two cheat meals a week. One night we usually go out for dinner with my parents and another we usually get pizza or something. When we do go out I try not to order the worst thing on the menu but I still enjoy myself.

Post # 6
2103 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: August 2012

I don’t cheat for the full day (meals/snacks/drinks) because it makes me feel like I’ve undone all my hard work for the week. But, I do allow myself one, maybe two relatively ‘bad’ meals per week.  It keeps me motivated to eat healthier options on other days because I know I’ll be able to really savor that meal. And I LIVE for food. Seriously. I love food. 

Post # 7
11167 posts
Sugar Beekeeper

As someone who lost 140 pounds and has kept it off for two years I can say 100% that I would have never been successful without allowing myself a cheat day (Saturdays), especially in the beginning.

You are basically retraining your body to crave new foods, healthier foods. By eliminating them entirely even in small quantities you are putting yourself in a difficult situation. I live by the old saying “it is better to have a little than a lot.” In other words when you are learning those new eating behaviors it is reasonable to have cravings for those naughty foods. Instead of going overboard later and binging on tons it is better to satisfy the craving every once in a while with reasonable portions.

Now I don’t really have cheat days because every day I eat while maintaining a balanced and healthy diet. After several months those old cravings essentially went away and I no longer have a strong desire for certain unhealthy foods, I replaced those cravings for something more healthy. However, should the need for frozen yogurt strike or chocolate I will eat it in moderation. The benefits of having a cheat day is to retrain and educate on the other days that you aren’t indulging.

The key to maintaining a healthy diet and weight loss is to not make it so impossible and miserable on ourselves. If you need a cheat day take a cheat day….especially if it leads to a lifetime of success.

Post # 8
2564 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: November 2013

I guess I give myself a “bad” day – today at work we had lunch catered and I overate a bit (two desserts, TWO!) but I did not have breakfast and will eat a light dinner and workout. 

I don’t eat like that regualrly so I figure once in a while is ok.  Plus I’ve lost ten pounds since moving in with SO, and usually it’s the opposite, so I’d say I’m doing ok! lol 🙂

Post # 9
1002 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: September 2012

I eat “naughty” foods every day, but in tiny portions. FWIW, it works for me.  I’ve lost 12 lbs this way.

Post # 10
7770 posts
Bumble Beekeeper
  • Wedding: July 2010

I have to have cheats!  But the most important thing is having a situation that works long term for you.  I like a cheat day, or a little cheating every day.  I make guidelines that help me stay on track, but also enjoy life.

Post # 11
883 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: September 2012

I really watch Monday – Friday. Try to at least walk 3x a week and both days of weekend. 


Our weekends are to enjoy food and wine/beer. 


And we’re older, so our metabolism is non-exisitant


Post # 12
8042 posts
Bumble Beekeeper
  • Wedding: December 2013

@pokie45:  Sorta. I admit we eat worse on weekends. I try not to drink any alcohol during the week (then the 1-3 drinks I have on the weekend aren’t so bad), and we generally eat healthier during the week.

We eat McDonald’s every Saturday – that’s our big treat for the week.

With that said, though, some weeks we eat better and some we eat worse. We don’t schedule a ‘cheat’ day per se. Everything in moderation.

I like the idea of allowing a treat every now and then, but it depends on how define a treat day. If you eat 10,000 calories (probably not, but you get the idea) then that can negate a lot of effort you’ve put in during the week.

Post # 13
1257 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: October 2013

Am I the only person who doesn’t like the word “cheat”. I think it is about creating a healthy lifestyle and not being on a strict diet up until you get married. Dieting is temporary. You need to integrate healthy eating habits into your life. If this was being done then it wouldn’t be considered “cheating”. You would be able to occasionally eat something without feeling guilt.

Post # 14
2853 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: May 2013

@pokie45:  Absolutely I allow myself a cheat day whe dieting but you will find from the responses below that this will depend a lot on personality as to whether it is beneficial or derails you. The calories from that one day will not ruin your efforts (unless you are preparing for a fitness competition), it is whether the cheat day extends beyond that day that could do the damage.

Post # 15
8446 posts
Bumble Beekeeper
  • Wedding: November 2010

I do a cheat day on Saturday.  I was going overboard for awhile, but I’ve just changed it up.  We go to lunch at Applebees for their excellent under 500 cal menu.  I don’t eat out the rest of the week.  Then the big treat is a trip to Baskin Robins.

So the total calorie intake doesn’t go up that much.

I will do major cheats on hoildays and bdays only now.  I’m older, so it’s harder for me.  I’ve dropped 80 lbs.

If i do a major cheat day, it will slow me down until late in the week.

Post # 16
5984 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: June 2010

@pokie45:  everytime I allow myself a cheat day, I end up having total issues getting back on track and it usually  is a bad thing for me. I suggest not planning a cheat day, but if something comes up that is worthy of a cheat (a homemade dish you dont get very often, a fancy resturant, etc) then when it happens let yourself cheat. However, not the entire day, just that meal. For example, I am going to a wedding next weekend (we are travling all weekend for it) I plan on makinghealthy choices, continuing to log them on myfitnesspal and staying under my cals BUT, if I end up going somewhere or beign tempted with something that just normally isnt an option for me, I might have some. but, I am not plannning, like, ok at the wedding, its free game, I am gonna use it as a cheat day and eat whatever I want. Because, for me, that is not going to help me at all. It will just make me want to fall into my old habbits. I hope this makes sense and helps. 

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