Is It Your Free Day? Here’s How To Do It Right!
After prolonged periods of cheating (i.e) bad food you will be used to build up cravings. Different foods have different chemical reactions in the brain. The food you crave depends on your mood and emotions. Once you’ve joined the gym and start using supplements you will find that nutrition will be an uphill battle. This is a battle that only the STRONGEST will survive! Make no mistake. When it comes to results it really is 50% nutrition, 25% exercise and 25% supplementation. A different importance is placed on each one. Yet, there is no way you will succeed without them all.
Now let’s look at the situation. You’re exercising and have your supplements. You’ve noticed that your nutrition is changing. However, you’re finding it’s difficult to stay on track. This is where your cheat day comes in handy. The fact is, if you are able to stay on track long enough you will eventually break. This usually comes around the 6th day. So we plan for 6 good days of nutrition followed by free day.
Your Free Day – How To Cheat Correctly
You can use a variety of methods depending on your training level. They are as follows:
- 6 hour day (recommended for beginners)
- 4 hour day (recommended for intermediate trainers)
- 1 meal per week (recommended for advanced trainers)
- 1 meal per month (recommended for elite athletes and professionals)
- Have a selection of small cheat meals spread out through-out the week. Have no more than three per week. This is recommended for trainers who train using high intensity.
Free Day – The Psychology
There is some basic psychology behind the free day idea. First is you will have been so good during the week and exercised so much, you’ve gotten results. Let’s say you’ve added anywhere between 1kg-3kg. You will feel one of two ways. The first is that you will feel so good and feel so much momentum that you will not want to cheat. Secondly is that you will desire these forbidden foods to much. You absolutely gauge yourself silly. In fact, you might actually feel sick. Also, you begin to not desire these foods on such a large scale.
Eat Clean Even On Your Free Day
The cleaner your food intake, the more nutritious it is, the more your body will desire these foods. and reject the bad foods. Right now, my nutrition is comprised of lean meats, vegetarian proteins, low GI vegetables, fruits, and nuts. Also, I’m eating low carbohydrates, no dairy and very low fructose.
Having said that if I go off the rails on my cheat day, I can say that I do not feel good. I actually feel sick. This is my body’s way of telling me that it is not used to what I’m making it eat.
In fact you could even liken it to certain food intolerance. I am quite often unable to consume excessive amounts of fats and sugars. This works as a great deterrent as I have never enjoyed feeling sick. I would have to say I don’t think anyone else has either.
I hope this has helped you better understand the emphasis behind having a free day. It can actually HELP you achieve your goals.
- Purpose shop for your free days. If you don’t have the self-control, don’t have bad food waiting around.
- Plan your free days. Is it when you’re going out? I prefer to save mine for special events and occasions.
- You will have to say no to some outings. if you don’t think you have the self-control, don’t go. You will only be able to do this if you have prioritized yourself.
- Don’t over eat. Just because it is a cheat day doesn’t mean you have to clear the table. You can and should only eat until you are just full. Having said that, on occasion it is okay to do that.
- Try the concept of having a clean free day. Don’t over indulge in protein shakes (RTDs) and protein bars. You might be surprised at the result. The fact is, if you’re cheating, you’re over loading on these products.
As you can see, a free day works. It’s a great way to break the monotony of eating the same clean diet every day. It gets some taste back into your eating plan. Still, it comes down to your goals. How bad do you want it? Then you do whatever it takes. By all means, enjoy your cheat day. But once you’re done, your goals will be waiting. Go crush them!
Written by Adrian Ambrose