Even those most dedicated to their health have days when they stray from their healthy eating plan or workout routine. These are often deemed “cheat” days, but this word has always bothered me. It implies that we have done something sneaky or wrong — and that’s never a productive emotion to infuse into our health routine. That’s why instead of “cheating” on a diet or workout plan, I like to think about it as enjoying or indulging intentionally and responsibly.
It’s natural to have food cravings and days when we just don’t have the motivation or energy to exercise. So how should we handle them? I encourage my clients to shift their mindset. Instead of viewing something as “cheating,” which makes us feel like we have lost control, let’s reframe these situations as consciously making a choice.
In this way, you aren’t letting these things happen to you, but doing them intentionally. This takes all of the guilt out of it, allows you to identify the root need you are addressing, and prevents one choice from spiraling into days or weeks of unhealthy choices.
Excerpted from Today