Posted on 08 August 2016
I was recently asked about what I have on my cheat days and it got me thinking – I don’t have cheat days. My mission is to empower women around the globe to live a healthy active lifestyle and focus body positivity & confidence. I believe in a balanced approach to nutrition… which means NO cheat days. Stay with me here…
I really don’t like the word "diet" as I don’t believe, unless medically necessary, that you should cut out certain foods or good groups from your diet. You certainly won’t see me offering any of my clients any deprivation diets, fad diets or limiting food groups. I allow my clients to have pasta, rice, fruits, even chocolate (best coach ever!?) – and ask them what they currently eat and enjoy.
The reason for this is that is that strict, deprivation diets lead to crazy cravings. When I was competing in Bikini Bodybuilding shows, with a very strict diet I started to feel really tired and craving foods that I never have craved before! It was testing to say the least and the foods/lack of foods I was eating had a huge impact on other areas of my life including work and socializing.
You can still have your cake and eat it too - My healthy lifestyle, including healthy food choices and consistent exercise, is the key to a guilt-free treat. I eat healthily all the time and more often than not I would always choose the healthy option when eating out, however occasionally if I want to have a piece of cake, then I will have it. I am sure many of you can relate, that if I didn’t have a small slice, half an hour later I would have polished off half the cake and hated myself for it!
On that note, I don't have a cheat day, and I don't encourage my clients to either. I aim to empower women to maintain the healthy balance of wholesome food choices and exercise, so there's no guilt around treating yourself to something "unhealthy" – especially as we all know it would end up with immense cravings reaching for everything naughty in sight! It’s all about balance and I would recommend having a “treat” here and there rather than it building up into an all-day binge.
I have witnessed first-hand how unhealthy relationships can form with food and I absolutely love food and encourage others too as well.
I think a key turning point is when people understand exactly what the foods they are eating do to the body and why they are important – education is key. We often fall into the vanity trap and relate eating “healthy” to our appearance in terms of weight. I think most people miss the point about nutrition affecting our health and preventing serious health issues and disease.
So read as much as you can, educate yourself and if you have any questions feel free to give me a shout!