Friday, February 26, 2010

Cheat Day

Ughhhh...I am sooo full.

I never used to allow myself to indulge, I would feel too guilty. I would diligently follow my daily routine of diet and exercise and rarely veer off plan. Despite this, I had to fight to maintain my weight.

Once in a while, I would allow myself a small treat, maybe something like a peanut butter cup or handful of chips...but I would quickly stop myself for fear I may get out of control.

A few months ago, I realized something...I had not had an entire "cheat meal" since LAST JUNE! Yep, June 2009, after running the Grandma's half marathon, I allowed myself to have a shrimp basket, onion rings and root beer from A&W. And, I didn't feel all that comfortable about it. This didn't seem right to me, to NEVER allow myself to indulge when I am so diligent about my diet and exercise on a daily basis. I always say no to goodies around the office, off-limits foods and even on HOLIDAYS, will eat maybe one piece of candy. I have to tell you a secret: this past Christmas Day, I made myself get up at 6 a.m. so I could run 5 miles before my family got up. This did not seem right to me, it seemed a bit obsessive the more I thought about it. I decided I had to relax the rules and live a little.

So, last month, I started toying with the idea of allowing myself a "cheat (or treat)" day once a month, where I would let myself have absolutely ANYTHING I had been craving.

I try to follow a strict "primal" diet the rest of the time. I eat whole foods, no grain, sugar, gluten, processed carbs of packaged "fake" foods. My diet consists mainly of meat, eggs, nuts, seeds, low glycemic fruits and vegetables and protein drinks.

However, a life where I would NEVER allow myself to have indulgences such as pizza, ice cream, chocolate or fast food would make me crazy and it might become impossible to stick to my plan.

Although a bit apprehensive...I decided to try it last month. I picked a day and decided "this is going to be my FREE DAY. Whatever I want. I had waffles for breakfast, a moderately intense workout, then went to McDonald's with Mike where I had a few little fried goodies I'd been visualizing sinking my teeth into for some time. Filet-o-Fish, fries and orange drink. I know this is absolute junk, but it's nostalgic for me. When I was a kid, it was such a huge treat to go on a school field trip and visit McDonald's. I ALWAYS got the Filet-o-Fish. I loved the tartar sauce, cheese slice and squishy doughy bun. Mmmm... it tasted great, but I wasn't stopping there! I told Mike I was STILL we both had another Filet-o-Fish and more fries! OINK!

After that I took a little break, then topped off the night with a Brownie Earthquake from DQ. It was good, but soooo sweet... Blah. I wished I had ordered a Peanut Buster Parfait. Next month! I promised myself. I went to bed feeling stuffed and sick. UGH. Thought to myself, "I'm going to display some more restraint next time." Hah! I jumped back on my usual plan the next day, had a great workout...and had weigh-in a week later. Weight was the same, no harm done.

Today, a month had passed, and a planned cheat day #2. Two things I had been fantasizing about: that peanut buster parfait and onion rings. I was determined to have BOTH!

I had an 18 hour fast yesterday (from 4 p.m. - 10:00 a.m.). Actually intermittent fasting is not bad for you and Primal Fitness highly recommends it. I also ran 3.5 miles on an empty stomach this morning, so around 10 I was starved and ready to EAT!!! Mike and I went out for breakfast...and the party was on. I had scrambled eggs, bacon, hash browns, toast and a bran muffin. MMMMM. For lunch, we had pizza at work, I had just one slice but it was huge. Not bad... um, ok... then I got home and Hailey and I had a long-standing date to go to Dairy Queen. Yep, my PBP was on the way!!! So we hit up the DQ where I FINALLY got to have my beloved royal treat and an order of onion rings. Heaven. (I did give Hailey ONE. hahahaha) The PBP was delicious by the way...that hot fudge...oooohhh... I think the baby loved it! Yeah, that's right. I did it for the baby. Ha.

OK, after that... I was pretty maxed out. The food fun wasn't over yet though because we had plans to go to church for their fish fry. I collapsed on the couch to rest my stomach for a while. LOL We headed up to church around 6. I was fired up for fish but my feeding had slowed down considerably. I managed to choke down one relatively small piece and 3 (very) mini dinner rolls squishy with butter - strange I know but I never eat bread and for some reason they were tasting really good to me - and some strawberry shortcake. I tried to resist it...but watching the strawberry sauce soaking into the delicious shortbread was just too much to take.

UGHHHH... on the way home, I thought I was dying. LOL I had way overdone it, again! My stomach felt like it was going to burst. I moaned and complained and lolled in the seat, nauseous with every bump that jarred my stomach. NOT FUN! I told myself. Why can't you just have a few treats and not get crazy??? I obviously can't do cheat day in moderation...and I guess that's why it's cheat day. One of the things is that once it's done, I don't feel like doing it again for another month and the thought of eating sugar and junk carbs makes me want to barf. I went home and drank water like I had been hiking across the desert...I was SO thirsty and my stomach was filled to the max so I couldn't drink much.

I think cheat day is a good gives me something to look forward to, a reward for all the hard work I do the other 29 or 30 days out of the month and it helps remind me why I don't eat those foods REGULARLY. It's also A LOT easier to say no to that office birthday cake or fast-food drive through that's often a daily temptation.

I think a long run is in order tomorrow, I will have tons of glycogen stores to burn up!

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