So we’ve all had that time where we come to the end of our goal or time period we have set ourselves. Whether that be training for an event, dieting for a holiday, beating a personal race best, or whatever it may be, you reach the finish fine.
We have spent many months of hard work putting in every effort we can, staying committed and making sacrifices. We’ve put in all that hard work, and hell YES we deserve to reward ourselves.
I’ve spent month of hard work, through strict diet and training to look the best I possibly could on the bodybuilding stage. So after competition I always give myself a week partially lapsed to enjoy any treats I want. (Note – Why I call this a week of Treats, and not a week of bingeing on anything and everything. I refer to this later) It also gives you a nice fresh break from following any training program or anything chicken and broccoli related … I feel this week not only elates your taste buds, but also brings back your passion for your health and fitness lifestyle.
The idea of eating anything and everything you want is amazing…. Until the day after when you forget that whole triple cheese pizza, 2 peanut butter brownies, fizzy drink, and packet of Doritos is actually pretty alien to your body. And now you feel like a very swollen, 6 months pregnant lady. VERY different to the 24 hours prior.
From a psychological point of view…this is fine!! You deserve treats, and you’re not going to get 10 fold additional body fat overnight. But… physically your body is not used to the poison you just fed it.
I refer back to my note on why I call this a week of treats, and not a week of complete binge eating:
Its very much acceptable to eat whatever you want 24 hours after a show. Its actually quite good for you as your nutrient levels are extremely low and the show itself will make you pretty exhausted. But continuing this crazy eating for more than 48 hours completely messes up your metabolism. As well as your endorphin and Insulin levels. Ruining all your hard work. Increased endorphin levels (feel good chemicals) makes you just crave more and more junk food, and the massive spike in insulin from all the carbs will suck any unwanted fat and sugar into your cells.
SO…By all means I eat my treats…But I eat them smart. Here’s how I do it:
- I make sure I drink plenty of fluids to re-hydrate my body.
- I still keep to balanced meals with plenty of protein to feed my body. I just add in tasty extra such as sauces, sides, flavorings, a little light cheese, or sweet potato fries instead of plain sweet potato.
(Deliciously healthy Carbonara!)
- Personally I have a very sweet tooth so my main treat is usually a pudding. Cookies, brownies, chocolate, and so on…! So, if I want something, I will have it. I wont just eat it because I am allowed to. Throughout the week I had those really amazing salted caramel cookies from Tesco bakery, an all butter chocolate topped flapjack, some more biscuits, and my best friends scrummy amazing nutella brownies (after a legs session..!)
- Always go for the healthy option. So I had a real craving for a Chinese but didn’t want the million macros that go with it. So I made myself a homemade healthy version which tasted just as amazing! Reduced salt soy sauce with tomato sauce, egg noodles, peppers, beansprouts, spring onion and chicken! RESULT.
- Protein bars are my savoir. So you want to eat something super tasty, but not the macros that come with it. Problem solved… Low carb high protein bars. I am addicted. (Grenade Carb Killas are basically magic – Just saying!)
So along with my week of treats, I have really enjoyed a few epic training sessions. With no training program to follow, and a body full of energy this week has really left me feeling re-charged and super happy with my lifestyle. I’m looking forward to continuing to enjoy health balanced food with an IIFYM (If It Fits Your Macros) approach and excited to do a variety or different training techniques in my workouts (Future blogs about these…!) I’m also going to enjoy a bit more gymnastics training both in the discipline and to work on crazy new strength/balance/core moves.
Taking a weeks break really has both physical and psychological benefits. Not only is my body well rested, but I always come back with a new vigor and desire to train.
MINDSET ACCOMPLISHED 😀