To Cheat or Not to Cheat

I’m sitting at my desk wondering why I feel like crap. For the most part I have been eating pretty good and following a good workout regimen so I should feel great right? I have my suspicions about why I feel like crap, which I will reveal to you but first let’s look at my diet.

I stick to a pretty boring diet during the week. Here is what it normally consists of:

Breakfast: 6 eggs – 6 whites and 3 yolks scrambled with spinach, green and red bell pepper, onion, two slices of organic bread (I may also throw in a banana)

Pre-workout: skinless, boneless chicken breast or thighs, quinoa, mixed vegetables (a frozen cauliflower, broccoli, and carrot medley)

Post-workout: usually the same as pre-workout but sometimes I switch it up with a protein shake and a banana if available.

Post-post-workout: sometimes around 5 o’clock I’ll have a spoonful or two of peanut butter to keep away the hunger pains until I get home and have a small dinner.

On the subject of peanut butter, I have found my new favorite. It’s Crazy Richard’s 100% Natural Creamy Peanut Butter. Most peanut butters out there have stuff in them like: palm oil, soybean oil, rapeseed oil (I’ve come across this crap in several processed foods. I’m sorry but I don’t want anything in my body with the word “rape” in the name), sugar, salt, molasses, Mono and Di-glycerides (I have no idea what this is but they sometimes put it in peanut butter). Crazy Richard’s Peanut Butter has only one ingredient – peanuts, and it is delicious. Even other so-called natural peanut butters have other junk in them. Crazy Richard’s is the real deal.

Dinner: Lately I’ve been stuck on having a sandwich for dinner. I know that may not seem that healthy but I justify it because I use the Hormel Natural Choice cold cuts because they are nitrate free, and put them with a slice of cheese on some organic bread. I also put a slice of onion, tomato, and some spinach on there to try and improve the nutritional value. This is an easy dinner for me because, by the time I get him after 7 p.m., I don’t feel like cooking so it’ much easier just to slap a sandwich together.

This past week I also abstained from alcohol, which I have decided will save me money and be healthier for me in the long run, a win-win in other words. I also cut out eating out; or eating junk in my case, because if I’m eating out it’s usually junk food – Burger King, Moe’s (yes I consider Moe’ junk food), Arby’s, Wendy’s, etc.

So with all these changes for the better, why do I feel like crap this morning?

As I’ve reached the ripe old age of forty-three I have developed a firm belief in the importance of routine, especially in the later years. As a young person, resiliency is high and the body and mind can bounce back from all sorts of changes and catastrophes but as we age resiliency diminishes and we lose our ability to bounce back as quick. Sure it’s okay to be a little impulsive every once in a while and sneak a Little Debbie into the diet but doing it on a regular basis can really mess me up. I do best having a routinely healthy diet that I follow every day, eating particular selections of healthy protein, carbs, and fruits and vegetables. When I break that routine, like I did this past Sunday in a big way, it wreaks havoc on me physically and mentally, hijacking my digestive system and throwing off my sense of well-being.

Sunday morning I started off wrong by waking up later than I normally do, that was my first mistake. Then for breakfast, instead of my usual routine eats, I cooked two slices of bacon, 3 whole fried eggs, and a biscuit. For lunch, instead of the usual I had two hamburgers and some white cheddar Cheetos. Yes I said Cheetos, big mistake right? The hamburgers were cooked at home but they were made from 85/15 ground beef. Considering all the grease from the breakfast bacon, plus from the high fat hamburgers, that’s a lot of animal fat that my body isn’t accustomed to processing.

Dinner consisted of a sandwich with deli ham and turkey but on top of that I had a 24 ounce Coors Light, a glass of Fairlife whole milk, and a glazed donut from the Walmart bakery.

As you can see, Sunday was a total disruption of my normal diet regimen. High fat breakfast and lunch, dairy and high sugar intake for dinner, with a 24 ounce beer chaser.

What would have been a better alternative? How about my normal breakfast, pre & post workout meals, and dinner with a donut. Or my normal meals with a beer, or bacon, or a glass of milk and a peanut butter sandwich on organic bread, instead of the donut. My point is you can’t eat the whole cake but you can have one slice. In other words, you can’t cheat all day long but you can have one cheat meal on a cheat day.

So taking that into consideration, I need some fresh ideas for cheat day. What is your favorite cheat meal?

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