Weight Loss
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Cheat Day ?

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After lots of research I have decided to follow my weight loss journey using the following guidelines... In your experience what works and what doesnt?

Im 5ft 7, 160lbs looking to lose around 20lbs bu July.

1. Daily Exercise, combination of Hatha Yoga and Running.

2. Lots of fresh produce, mainly Raw Food Diet (I am mostly veggie) keeping to under 1400 calories a day

3. One CHEAT DAY per week, where I can eat what i want (within reason ,im thinking a treat meal, bread, dairy etc, some alcohol)I have read in lots of articles that this helps spike the metabolism and in the LONG term helps people keep to a weight loss regime.

I dont plan to eat 6 mcdonalds every cheat day, but I do think the idea of just one day a week were I am not counting calories, thinking about what i eat but just making general heathy choices with some treats will help relieve the stress of dieting.

Thanks for reading.

Hannah x

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Cheat days will keep u happy and gives u something to look forward to each week. And in my case, it has helped to spur my metabolism too. Ive read and heard some experts say that you can count your cals on a weekly basis too. Meaning that yoi could shave a few hundred off over the course of 6 days and "use" them on your cheat day.

I have cheatmeal at once or twice a week. Usually saturday and sunday. Every single weeknd my gf and me get frozen yogurt with chocolates, fruit, granola etc. its a nice treat after eatin healthy and busting my ass in the gym. Lifes short enjoy ur fav foods every once in a while:).. Cheers

They dont work for me if I have any bread or cheese, as it sets up a craving which takes forever to get over (still trying to get back on track after a piece of healthy pizza five days ago...)

And my body isn't happy with a load of dairy and whole wheat...

I would like one day of not counting calories, just eating when I'm hungry, and stopping when I'm full. Not worrying about potassium, carb ratios etc... I think of it as practice for a non-dieting lifestyle!

Try it and see if it works for you

I'm with cathy, if I eat junk it kicks in the cravings and makes the week harder. I had a dinner party a couple of weeks ago and I think I ate good and saved room for chocolate cake. That seemed to work for me, but it's a once a month thing, not weekly.

I'm hoping this is true 'cause I'm afraid tomorrow will be a cheat day... we're having a Stag and Doe party which means: junk food (chips, dip, pizza) and alcohol.

Any advice on how I can prep for it? Eat fruit and veggies only all day? (although that will make the alcohol hit harder -- which means cost savings in the end lol)

I used to have a cheat day every weekend, and it worked well for me.  I just had to know that the scale on Monday might be a bit higher, so I usually followed my trendline on Tuesday to make sure I was still going in the right direction. 

Right now though, I just feel better when I eat healthy so while I still allow myself cheat days, it usually ends up just being a meal, or something at a meal (i.e. dessert) because otherwise I just feel gross.

I think the longer you have healthy habits the more your body wants to stay healthy.  I fully enjoyed my St. Patty's Day beers and fried food but I also ran 7 miles that morning and did my weight lifting class.  But Sunday I was back to wanting to put good things back in my body!  :)

Thanks everyone, think im just going to have one day where I dont calorie count and maybe have a few treats

Im hoping to get rid of these 20lbs which have been stuck for the last 8 years, been on/off calorie count for a while but its a new resolution to check back once a day for 30 mins,

Good luck all of you xx

Just be careful not to eat everything you lost back on that cheat day... Been there, done that, not good.

Its just a nightmare. Im trying to stay vegan and mostly raw food. I love the meals and im not hungry but the problem is finding the calorie content of what i am eating, so many hidden healthy fats like nuts and avocados in things.

Spent an afternoon trawling the intrenet and all the raw food sites say not to count calories... but surely a diet based on salads, and then topping up with high calorie desserts isnt a good idea?!

I think cheat day will work only in maintenance phase. Once body stabilized at a certain weight, it tries to stay there as long as possible by using more calories for regular activities. Unfortunately opposite of this is true as well. The problem is, if you are trying to lose weight and taking less calories than you need, you are loosing the precious fat stores according to the inner logic of the body. Body considers this as a threat to the balance it established, wonders if a famine coming up. So when it has the opportunity on this cheat day to store some extra calories and get back to the original weight, it will. Although in order to gain 1 lbs you need to take in net 3500 extra calories. So eating a piece of chocolate cake or an extra plate of whatever is not going to make much of a difference, if done once in a while. All this is theoratical talking of course, in reality nobody knows what is going on in each individual body. Please let us know how it went for you Dreamwaster.

eeser, what you are describing (famine) is only going to be an issue if you are severely restricting. For people eating at a reasonable 500-cal deficit, having one day where they eat at maintenance is not going to trigger some kind of extra storage.

If it did, we'd all have to keep eating for weight loss when we reach our goal weight, because by your logic, we'd all gain weight when we started eating for maintenance.


When losing weight, I never counted on the weekends, and I assume that I ate around maintenance. During the week, I'd eat a 500-cal deficit. Towards the very end, weight loss went slower, but through most of my ~30lbs lost, I lost about a pound a week, and I transitioned pretty seamlessly into maintenance without gaining weight. I credit this in part to my weekends - it helped me prepare for maintaining and not always counting. It also helped me keep to my deficit during the week.

If you are eating at a 500 calorie deficit, one day of eating maintenance means at most you are going to reach your goal one day later. It means that at the end of the week, you've lost 0.85lbs instead of 1lb of fat. And that's assuming that eating more on that day doesn't give you the energy to be more active, and you don't end up with a deficit anyway.

I never refer to what I'm doing as cheating, because that would suggest I'm doing something wrong. I do eat more on some days than others, which is what a normal, non-calorie counting, non-overweight person would do naturally.

It might be better if you keep it simple and choose either to be a vegan or loose weight. Trying to do both might cause you give up both goals. If you chose to be a vegan, you will probably be losing weight as well so why worry about counting the calories. Vice versa. When things start to become complicated it is harder to keep focused. If you really want to go ahead and do both at once, try buying one of the calorie books which analyses most food in terms of caloric value, fat, protein etc.

I have always loved fruit, since it's sweet and I have a sweet-tooth, and also eat lots of veggies. It was only after joining caloriecount that I noticed that I was consuming an impressive amount of calories - and sugar -  just from fruit. My vitamin A and C was everyday at least at 300%. Now I focus on healthy diet, specially more iron and keep my calories within the limit, that's how I choose what I eat.

Today was pancake day, it's like my fake cheat day since it feels like I am eating desserts all day long but it's still within calories and have all the good nutrients, okay carbs were too high but nothing too serious. :)

When I enter the maintenance phase, I will adopt the 80-20 diet. Within the caloric intake 80% is just healthy food - get what we need - the other 20% are free choice. No cheat days, I get a treat everyday as long as it doesn't have more than 20% of the day's calories.

I'm like cathysmallwood, if I have a cheat day it makes my cravings really bad for like...a week.

If I want to eat something bad, I just count calories. If I really want Thai food or something (the portions being around 800 calories) I'll get it, eat half for lunch and half for dinner, and make sure I only eat 400 calories for breakfast and snacks combined. Still under 1200!

Original Post by kaelamackenzie:

Still under 1200!

1200 is the bare minimum, not the maximum.

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