You Overindulged, Now What? 6 Tips For “Cheat” Meals

Do you ever have days where you enjoy an untracked “cheat” meal and then feel guilty?

I used to!

{Flashback to my “bro diet” days…}

The sun was shining, we were jamming on our deck while grilling and I gave into a beer.  Just one, but things went downhill from there.

familyThe next day, we went out to dinner and although I had a steak and green beans, I also had a salad with croutons, ranch and some bread.

longhorn saladFriday, I headed over to my MIL’s house with the family and we ended up getting pizza.  Of course, I could have planned ahead and brought my own food, but I didn’t.

Needless to say, it was a few days worth of making some off-track choices that I normally wouldn’t.

The guilt kept bothering me and instead of getting back on track, I kept veering driving off a steep cliff into a raging ocean.  McDonald’s, more pizza and a little bit of dessert happened over the weekend.

I was so mad at myself and feeling like I had ruined all the hard work I have been putting in.


Well, now that I follow IIFYM and flexibile dieting, I realize that it’s ok and have a much healthier relationship with food.  I don’t look at food as bad or good.  I eat for fuel and for fun… with zero guilt!

But there are still times that I go way over than what my calorie/macro goal is for the day.

So what do you do when that happens and you fall face first into some delicious pizza and wine?!

Move friggin’ on. That’s what!

It’s bound to happen, you guys; we are human!

Realize that you will never eat 100% perfect.

You just won’t.

Or maybe you will but you won’t be happy or will stress about food.  There are times I just can’t resist a good martini with friends or a bite of chocolate, but I would rather enjoy life and social situations than be too rigid all the time.

tips on feeling guilty when you cheat on your meal plan


1) Don’t feel guilty

If you are typically on track with your meal plan (calorie, macros, etc) then you should be fine.  One day you might not eat as clean or be over on your calories, but in the long run, it’s about what you do day in and day out.  Keeping a balance will keep you happy AND healthy.  You should never feel guilty for enjoying a treat while making memories!  One bad day won’t make you fat just like one good day won’t make you lean.


2) Don’t bounce from one extreme to the other

It’s a slippery slope if you indulge and then punish yourself with extra cardio or over-restriction of calories the next day.  Just get right back on track with your normal plan


3) Make Your Next Meal Better

Just getting back on track for one meal will help you start to feel better.  Then you can snowball your efforts and you will be back to normal in no time.

4) Drink plenty of water

A few bad meals isn’t anything to lose sleep over.  If your weight went up a little bit, you aren’t doomed because the scale is reflecting water retention.  Drinking some extra water will help move things right along.


 5) Crush A Training Session

Have an awesome workout.  Extra calories = extra fuel!


6) Reflect on You Mistake & Learn

Some non-judgemental reflection can provide insight as to why overeating occurred.  Did you wait too long between meals?  Maybe next time you can keep a snack on hand to help tide you over.

Think about why you enjoyed your cheat meal and why you are glad to be back to your meal plan.  Understanding why both are important to your goals will encourage you to have a healthy relationship with food and fitness.

I hope this helps you feel a bit at ease and encourages you to have a healthy relationship with food.  There is absolutely nothing wrong with an untracked meal or even an untracked day!



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