There are a few common assumptions shared in almost every conversation I have with someone who is looking to shed some fat.
Whether it’s a new client. A friend who hasn’t spent a full day with me. Or even a random stranger in a pub.
These assumptions are lethal to leanness. They are friends to fat.
AND if you share them, they will absolutely limit your ability to achieve your weight loss goal.
So I decided to document a couple of days in my regular eating week.
The Glorious Cheat Day:
Personally I stick to an extended cheat meal every Sunday. (here’s why:)
An Ideal Fat Burning Day:
Followed Monday to Friday with a similar yet more relaxed approach Saturday.
A few caveats before we begin:
One: Are YOU Fish Free? 100% Plant Based? All Good. Me too now. I’ve left this post up as A) It’s perfect for my Vego friends and B) It’s a transparent record of a HUGE part of my journey to Plant Strong eating.
=> Here’s how my Ideal Vegan Fat Burning Day now looks:
Two: This is Kate in ‘maintenance mode’ (which is my goal around 50 weeks a year).
About once every 12 months I get caught up in the ‘get in my best shape EVER’ hype and try to stick to a stricter regime which produces negligible to non-existent results… you’d think I’d learn right?
=> Having said that, unless your goal is the same as mine body fat % wise (and most people I meet tell me their goal is not the same as mine), an approach such as this followed 80-90% of the time will get you awesome weight loss results.
Three: I choose to include my most fav #1 VICE, SHIRAZ in my regular eating week… if I didn’t my food could be more relaxed.
An attraction to vice is natural and human and FUN. I believe your vices can and should be worked into your regular eating week. What is too much of a good thing?
=> When your immediate-gratification-love-of-vice is detracting from the things that are long term most important to you or necessary to function and contribute. Your relationships. Your career. Your health.
Ok, let’s start with Sunday: Rest day AND Cheat Day.
Breakfast: Multi-grain roll toasted with avocado, salt, ricotta.
plus Mini-focaccia: this is white bread and yellow cheese with olives, sun-dried tomato etc.
=> fresh bread is my most fav thing. I love it. Sometimes I’ll have a muffin or scone or yoghurt but usually I most want bread. It’ll always be a generous serve. I’d rather have the equivalent of 6 pieces of bread over Sat and Sunday than 1 piece a day over 6 days. That’s just how I work. If I was a chocolate person I’d have a bar or two on the weekend rather than 2 torturous squares each night!
I also have a couple of coffees, usually home made with almond milk and natvia.
Today one was bought with a dash of soy milk. The other was home made with a scoop of protein powder.
=> I’d rather not have any soy or any additional protein powder in my coffee, however the odd dash here and there is no biggie.
Morning tea: another coffee with almond milk and natvia + a protein pancake.
=> I’m not hungry at this point, I just like to eat, and on Sunday I’m ok with it.
I’d like to drink only 1-2 coffees a day however currently they are ‘that little treat’ that does not affect my body composition and gives me great pleasure, so for now the ‘liquid gold’ stays.
I’ve toyed with the idea of dropping protein powder (except straight after my weights sessions as it’s the most reliable fast fuel for your muscles). Yes, I preach one ingredient foods and protein powder is really fake. Here’s the thing:
I don’t believe there is a PERFECT BALANCE so far as perfect food and total satisfaction and enjoyment and loving the way your body looks. Letting go of ‘perfect food’ 100% of the time and having a tiny bit of fake in my routine let’s me eat till I’m full and satisfied. It allows me to get away with some emotional eating. Finally, I genuinely believe it’s the only way I can stay as lean and muscly as I want without eating meat.
I’ve recently swapped to raw vegan protein powder (it’s still yum) so I feel a little better about that.
Lunch: a massive salad. Green leaves with undressed coleslaw plus tomato, avocado, spring onion, capsicum, coriander. Topped with mixed frozen veg and some fresh baked veg like mushroom and cauliflower. Dressed with balsamic and hommus. This salad will often have 20+ different veg.
Followed by 2 more protein pancakes… and another coffee.
(Yes, I was pretty stuffed by now)
4PM = VINO O’CLOCK: I often catch up with mates on a Sunday afternoon. My local is a short 15 minute walk, as it happened this Sunday the vino’s were going down especially well!
I won’t lie to you. I had 6 glasses of Shiraz.
This used to be my DANGER TIME. Most of my Sunday buddies drink beer, which on a gorgeous Sunday arvo, in a pumping beer garden is somewhat more appealing than red wine. However for a couple of years I’ve stuck to no beer and alternate between wine and vodka soda fresh lime. I made the change when I decided I love being my goal shape more than beer.
Like most weight loss choices it may not initially be easy, however it is simple.
This week it was pretty rubbish weather… so the wine was more appealing.
These chips were also pretty appealing!
Once I start I become an outta-control-chip-gobbling-monster because fresh golden crispy fries truly are a trigger food for me. So now I just don’t start. Not even one. (I promise!)
The choc bar was not appealing…. it’s just not my thing.
I always walk home from the pub (it brings my Sunday exercise to a total of 60 minutes incidental walking because I also walked to the bakery for breakfast) For the walk home I grabbed the cashews.
=> I was pretty starving and aware that I wanted to wake up fresh at 4.30am so although salted cashews are not a normal part of my Sunday evening, I’m totally ok with them.
Dinner: fresh barramundi and veg. (the one of the left)
=> regardless of what I’ve had to drink I will always have a proper dinner. 150-180 grams of fresh Barramundi or Snapper fillet with an assortment of baked/roasted/stir-fried veg is my most common Go2Dinner. Sundays’ exhibit may not look as pretty as a normal dinner (!) however it’s still going to consist of plenty of fibrous veg and lean protein cooked with some good fat in the form of olive oil and coconut oil.
Dessert: 2 more protein pancakes. Yes, I’m addicted.
=> I don’t ‘need’ these after 150+ grams of fish, however I want them.
I’m a fan of finishing ‘Cheat Day’ with the awesome fuel you regularly fuel your body. To be honest I now crave fresh and micronutrient rich food anyway. However it wasn’t always that way. You crave what you eat and I used to be a processed-carb-demolishing-machine. I’m conscious that bad habits are really easy to let back into your routine.
As quick as you can say, “pop into the bakery for a couple of extra cape-seed rolls” I’d be back at bread for breakfast and lunch, pasta and bread for dinner and cereal or bread (!) for snacks.
Ok, this is getting a little lengthy so I’ll continue in my Ideal Fat Burning Day part 2 here:
If you found this post useful you may enjoy: How To DUMP Measuring To Naturally Lose Weight.
P.S. Love to hear your thoughts. Do you have a cheat day – or meal?
What are your #1 Vice and Trigger foods and how do you successfully work them into your routine? Or perhaps you’d like some suggestions on how anything can successfully be worked into your routine?