Should I break my Diet?

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    May 29, 2008 1:08 AM GMT
    So I've been on a diet now to lose the belly that I gained from my recent bulking phase. It's a pretty aggressive (but healthy) diet so that I can lose the fat quicker rather than later. I've been pretty disciplined about it, I take Sunday's (and some of Saturdays) off. But here I sit in this French/Moroccan-inspired cafe. I am surrounded by my old friends: warm chocolate cake, cheese plates, chocolate mousse, glazed apricots and other pastry delights! Oh how I miss them right now!

    Right Half of Brain: "Oh, go on! You're being so good! Why not just purchase one delectable treat and just have a few bites! You shouldn't be so rigid! Surely one nibble won't throw off your whole mission to lose your belly!"

    Left Half of Brain: "Nooooo! This is a slippery slope. And you don't actually *need* this food, you are simply being driven by a compulsive need to pig out. That's not about craving. That's about compulsive self-destruction. You won't feel any better. In fact, you will feel defeated. How do you expect to get the body of your dreams if you don't make the hard decisions???"

    Right Half of Brain: "But I'm so good in general!"

    WHAT WILL HAPPEN?????? WHO WILL WIN OUT???????
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    May 29, 2008 1:16 AM GMT
    A good strategy in maintaining a diet over the long run actually incorporates so-called "cheat" meals where you get to put off any rigid dietary guidelines and just eat what your heart contends. Of course, this will set you back on your diet path slightly, but the benefit lies in that your body's cravings have been silenced for the time being.

    It also gives you something good and tasty to look forwards to in the immediate future, as opposed to grinding it out for several long weeks. So consider setting aside one or two meals a week and perhaps a snack on the side for you to indulge upon.

    Also, after reading your post over again, it seems like you take some saturdays and then sunday's off (I'm assuming from your diet). Well in that case, might I suggest you space out your off days more evenly, say like today is Wednesday and then sunday.
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    May 29, 2008 2:59 AM GMT
    I'm only letting you buy the Banana cake on Saturday, but does it count if someone buys it for you another day?

    When you are having a craving, drink a 16oz glass of water. It works well for me, bubbly water usually the best. I crave savory items and it really works well.
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    May 29, 2008 12:41 PM GMT
    innerathlete saidBut here I sit in this French/Moroccan-inspired cafe. I am surrounded by my old friends: warm chocolate cake, cheese plates, chocolate mousse, glazed apricots and other pastry delights! Oh how I miss them right now!


    Mate that is some serious food-porn! You're dragging me in too............!
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    May 29, 2008 1:21 PM GMT
    innerathlete saidWHAT WILL HAPPEN?????? WHO WILL WIN OUT???????


    In my experience (I go through this all day long, BTW) the winner is entirely up to you.
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    May 29, 2008 1:28 PM GMT
    Have the cake. The occasional treat will do no harm. Why should it be a slippery slope? Will you end up gorging yourself on fatty food?
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    May 29, 2008 2:35 PM GMT
    cakes.jpg[/img]


    p122032-Abruzzo_Italy-Italian_Pastries.j


    pastries.jpg



    mmmmmmmmmmmmmm
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    May 29, 2008 2:53 PM GMT
    Well, I didn't give in (though I did go home and make some homemade granola that I picked at throughout the night). I think part of the problem is that 2300 calories is simply not enough food for me when I am doing intense workouts and cardio all week. Yesterday, I was actively hungry all day despite having had 5 meals, By the time I sat down in that cafe, I was starving and could barely keep my mind on work and that's when the temptation kicked in. I think I am going to really add up the calories I'm consuming as well as the macro breakdown and see if I can intelligently pad it out a little. My trainer is amazing but I know he's also a little intense about food in his own life and he might be pushing me a bit too excessively in that arena.

    Mmmboni saidI'm only letting you buy the Banana cake on Saturday...


    Sunday is banana cake day. And my dog's name is Bobby.icon_smile.gif
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    May 29, 2008 3:28 PM GMT
    Here's one solution: Just take one bite of a dessert - you'll get the taste - and you know what? Often the first bite is the best one - we don't need to eat the whole thing. If I want a chocolate rush, I might drink a Slimfast - tastes almost as good a chocolate malt!
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    May 29, 2008 3:48 PM GMT
    There are a couple ways to look at this. The first and simplest is simply to ask yourself is this going to get me where I want to be. When people have a cheat meal they tend to cheat big and if you think about it let's say that cheat meal causes you to go over by 1,000 calories. Hmmm, 1,000 calories not a disaster right. However, that is two more days of the diet for every cheat meal.

    The second way to look at this is from the disaster avoidance view. Basically find yourself some chocolate, truffles, caramels, whatever the hell it is that you really like, and have one of two of those before you hit the entire cake. This works even better if its something very rich, usually a small piece or two will satisfy the sweet craving and prevent you from eating some obscene amount of cake or something else. I've known several people that have used Hersey's kisses to do the trick, usually after two of them they have satisfied the sweet craving and they've prevented a dietary nightmare. Dark chocolate is supposed to be a great choice for this, at least you get some healthy antioxidents with it, and the richness will usually settle a sweets craving pretty quickly.

    Worst case scenario, have ONE small piece, not a few bites of it, have the small piece, and be prepared to work extra hard that day, an extra half hour of cardio. By the way, in saying this, this is a the very, very rare occasion, the I'll work it off mentality might work for a once in blue moon cheat, but if applied frequently its a recipe for disaster.