When you first look at any “diet” or “meal plan” intended to make you drop weight you might find yourself thinking one of these two things: “No way!” or maybe, “I can probably do this…” …Right?
Then time goes on … you stick to the plan a day … maybe two, but as the days (maybe just hours) go by, you have that craving for chocolate, the desire for a cold beer, you’re too tired to workout … you feel like you’ve failed. You decide you can’t do it, it’s not worth it, and you chalk it up to “at least I tried.” Then maybe you go back to your old habits, hey- they were easier, and slowly you drag around those extra pounds. You tell yourself: next time I’ll do it.
Today has to be your NEXT TIME. You don’t know how many “next times” you’ll get, so be better today. Are you going to have a craving? Are you going to give in? Yes and yes! Our pallets have for too long been acquainted with super sugary sweets and savory salt. (Did you just get hungry? lol) Our portions have swamped our plates and our scales have borne the pain. …Should you feel guilty?
Nope. It’s normal to be imperfect. No one is perfect. Everyone has a food that they love that just isn’t healthy at all (cheeseballs). So accept that you aren’t perfect and move on. There are more important things: Like being your best you and being happy too!
So while I’ve attempted to stick as closely to Autumn Calabrese’s 21 Day meal plan as I can, I have cheated in small ways. Have I still seen a difference? Heck yes! Because overall, I’ve made some drastic changes to my diet and exercise plans, but I’ve done it in a sustainable way, that way I don’t fall off the wagon and gain back those yucky pounds I worked too hard to lose.
- I like nuts, but I can’t eat them plain! Sorry. So I do by nuts with seasoning. Such as pistachios with Chile pepper or almonds with honey bbq. Are nuts still a healthy choice? Yup. They are so much healthier for you than chips. Put nutrition in your lunch bag and in your cupboard 😉
- Drinking! I like a cocktail, but you can’t drink wine every night or a beer every day after work and expect to see much results. Sorry! So I choose my vices as wisely as I can (which meant kind of/sort of giving up hard ciders 😦 I mix them half and half with flavored soda water now, that’s one cheat!) I also try plain vodka with crystal lite lemonade. I know other girls who mix their vodkas with flavored soda waters. So drink smart and skinny. And don’t drink so much you won’t feel like being active!
- Sweet treats! Do I like them? Yup. Should I eat an entire candybar? Nope. So I get a bag of M & Ms or skittles and put them in a bowl in the cupboard (They are currently working double duty as prize for Lydia when she uses the potty!) The candy isn’t directly in front of my face. I’m not going to mow down three servings. I’m going to have two before I sit on the couch, and guess what? That does it. I’m good. I didn’t deprive myself, but I didn’t give myself too much of what I don’t need either.
- I save my carbs for dinner or snack on the couch with hubby. If you have your shake in the morning, then no carb for breakfast! If you have veggies, hardboiled eggs, or yogurt for snacks (also fruit), then no carb for snacks! If you have your delicious chicken salad on dark green spinach for lunch, then no carb at lunch! So guess what that means? I get my carb for dinner and maybe some wheat thins on the couch, with some hot Yancy’s Fancies cheese (saved for my blue box) in the evening. Is it the best thing to have all your carbs in the evening? Perhaps not, but I don’t do this every day, and I do see results. So if it works for me, then it might work for you!
Be mindful of your choices. Whenever you can, make the healthy choice, that way when you slip you won’t have to feel as bad about it. The world is full of so many delicious flavors, but we can be smart about how we choose to taste them.
What’s your cheat? What do you do to stay on track?