What to Do When You Blow Your Diet

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Why Cheating Kills Your Diet
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May 26, 2015

What to Do When You Blow Your Diet

iStock_000014590371XSmallIt happens to everyone sooner or later. You know you’ve done it. Even the most dedicated weight loss experts do it. At some point, the temptation grows too strong… and we all cheat on our diets.

Of course, the next morning you feel remorse. It might be your imagination, but you could swear your pants seem a little tighter today. You aren’t sure the comfort food was worth this feeling of disappointment in yourself. But regrets aren’t going to make your pants fit again. How can you get back on track toward your weight loss goals?

Begin with the next meal. Some people have a tendency to think, “Well, I’ve already ruined my diet for the weekend. Might as well enjoy it!” Don’t allow your splurge to carry on into the next meal… and the next… and the next. The truth is, that one splurge isn’t going to set you back all that much. But if you allow your one cheat meal to become a full cheat week, then you will suffer some consequences.

Don’t try to compensate. Don’t skip your next meal, thinking you’ll make up for the extra calories. This will only set you up for a yo-yo dieting cycle that will wreak havoc on your metabolism.

Reassess your goals. What motivated you to begin your weight loss journey in the first place? Were you hoping to be thin and fit for a class reunion? Were you hoping to get in shape by summer? If you wrote down your original goals when you first set your weight loss goals, get out that notebook now. Review your goals, and remind yourself why they are important to you.

Ask yourself how it happened. If you blew your calorie budget because you’re under too much stress, look for ways to simplify your schedule. If a friend urged you to “just have some cake”, don’t go out to eat with that friend when you’re feeling weak. If the constant presence of junk food in the house is too tempting, talk to your partner or kids about keeping their stash hidden from your sight.

Work it off. You did the crime, now do the time! That’s a joke, of course. You should never view your workouts as a punishment. But going for an extra long walk will help you feel as though you’ve atoned for your dietary sins, and it will help you get back on track toward your weight loss goals.

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