Weight Loss Support - Eat Whatever You Want And Still Lose Weight




AJ113
07-13-2008, 07:47 PM
Heh, I thought that title may get a few of you in here!

So I have this theory: many dieters have a 'cheat' day in their regime, where they allow themselves some treats that they wouldn't normally have on a normal day.

What if we were to take this to the extreme, and the cheat day became 'pig out' day, where you eat anything and everything - french fries, chips, candies, cakes, pizzas etc, no holds barred, eat until you nearly make yourself sick.

Why might this have a positive effect on weight loss? Well, firstly if you know that you can go crazy one day per week, it may give you the strength and resolve to stay on the rails for the other six days.

Secondly when it comes to eating during the following the day, you are so full from the previous day that your intake could be reduced, which will go some way towards negating the sins of the previous day.

Thirdly, the huge intake of energy could rocket your metabolism into overdrive in order to cope with the increase in energy intake, and when you resume your normal diet during the following few days your metabolism is still in overdrive mode, burning up fat as it goes.

What do you think? I've been doing this for the past three weeks, and it certainly hasn't damaged my progress, but it's too early to say whether it is having a definite positive impact because at this stage my weight loss is quite slow anyway, but I'll report back if I notice any changes. It's certainly nice to know that I can stuff my face - if I want to - every Saturday. Yay! :) (http://www.lose-inches.info)


junebug41
07-13-2008, 08:05 PM
Ahh, yes, the cheat day.

I don't do cheat "days". I used to, but gosh it was so much fun planning out everything I was going to eat on that day so by the time I got there, boy was I ready for it! Also, I think I had a bit of "cheater's guilt", where I would just kick myself the next day and it just wasn't all that worth it.

Unfortunately, I can look at a plate of donuts and gain 2 pounds. Also, if someone is very carb sensitive and you tell them it's ok to eat all the pasta and bread they want for a day, that could have some negative effects. It could lead to more bingeing. It could make them sick.

I think it's true that when you overeat one day, our natural appetites will adjust accordingly the next day. However, what if you just like to eat? I know lots of people on this site who just really like to eat and pay little mind to actual appetite. In fact, if I did listen to my appetite, I would probably still be obese. I have to put a lot of thought into it, actually.

For me, I don't "plan" binges in order to accommodate cravings or create balance. Let's take eating out and drinking, for example. I like to eat out and I like wine. I like it so much that I'll have a glass of my favorite red every evening. To me, that's dessert. With eating out, I may get a call from a friend who wants to have dinner and I will go, but I don't just expect to naturally eat less that day, I actually have to adjust accordingly.

When I started dating my fiance, he had cheat "days" every Saturday. He would have donuts for breakfast, something like Chipotle for lunch and pizza for dinner. At first I was new to maintaining and thought that sounded great. I mean, I like pizza, donuts AND Chipotle, so I thought it would be fun. I soon found that I don't like them over the course of the same day.

Honestly, I just felt like garbage. What I was doing to my body just wasn't worth it.

Kofarq
07-13-2008, 08:09 PM
No, thank you.
That sounds a lot like binging to me, and that is something I've never done to that extreme. I don't want to stuff myself anymore, and all that pizza, fries, etc would MAKE me sick, and I'd be disgusted with myself. I'd rather eat foods that are good for me, and make me feel good, and eat right every day. That's what my maintenance will be.


junebug41
07-13-2008, 08:12 PM
No, thank you.
That sounds a lot like binging to me, and that is something I've never done to that extreme. I don't want to stuff myself anymore, and all that pizza, fries, etc would MAKE me sick, and I'd be disgusted with myself. I'd rather eat foods that are good for me, and make me feel good, and eat right every day. That's what my maintenance will be.

Or you could take everything I said and smash it down to this :lol:

Kori, when are you getting married? I'm August 23rd.

EZMONEY
07-13-2008, 08:52 PM
So the theory is you want to stay in control so you can plan to go out of control?

To me that sounds like a disaster in the making. But that's just me.

UrsusMaritimus
07-13-2008, 09:15 PM
Ever read "Body for Life?" That plan includes a complete "pig out" day if you want to go there. I suspect, though, that when people start seeing results the urge to absolutely gorge yourself starts dissipating...

On a side note, I went out with friends for Indian food on Friday. I worked a 60 hour week last week, and on Friday I ate breakfast but didn't plan well and wound up fasting until dinner time. At dinner I ate a single plate of food from the buffet so fast that I spent the next two hours in agony. Wouldn't have been a problem before I started this journey.

No binge days for me.

pinkcarnation
07-13-2008, 09:31 PM
Nah, I just learned about the horrors of trans fat :( and my days of eating indiscriminately are over. I spent a traumatic afternoon clearing out my pantry of some beloved foods. I said my final good-byes.

PhotoChick
07-13-2008, 09:49 PM
no holds barred, eat until you nearly make yourself sick.
I have a real problem with this.

I don't at all have a problem with the idea of a day where you don't count calories or where you eat off plan or where you indulge your cravings or whatever. I prefer not to call it a "cheat" day because for me ... well ... what would I be "cheating" on? My life?

There are plenty of days that I am less careful about what I eat or that I say "today I'm not going to count calories, I'm just going to eat what I want and not feel bad about it later". Most of the time those days include going out to eat with friends or a party or something like that.

But I have a huge problem with the mindset of intentionally going out and eating all the worst possible foods for you, and intentionally doing it in quantities that will make you feel like crap.

To me that sounds like giving yourself permission to binge and that is a slippery slope.

.

Tomato
07-13-2008, 09:54 PM
Definitely not for me. First of all, I really don't see it possible that I would eat so much one day that I would be eat less the next day. I simply cannot eat so much - that's not how my body works (one of the reasons I never fancied "eat as much as you can" buffet - I always lose money on it. I would be hungry as usual the next day and quite possibly, I think I would have a problem giving up whipped cream, burgers and cakes and going back to veggies and fruit.

Mind you, I am NOT on a diet. I eat clean and healthy; but that does not mean that I can't have a pizza here and there, or that I can't eat out occasionally (and have a large salad only).

I also suspect that a man's metabolism does not work exactly the same way a woman's does. So good for you if this is working for you but I won't even try.

luckymommy
07-13-2008, 10:03 PM
I think that if you can do it and it works for you, then I think that's great. However, I wonder if maybe it's better to limit it to one meal or one spulrge of a food item? Personally, I have found that even after a binge, I tend to feel terrible but eventually, when I get back on track, I lose the weight I gained and even more. However, for me, it's a dangerous place to be because I have a major problem with binging and one binge can turn into another, and another, etc. So, what I do is try to avoid it altogether, but if I have a bad meal or a bad day, I just count that as my "cheat" day...but the guilt is still there....maybe it's that out of control feeling, kwim? Anyway, you bring up a very good point w/ your post. :)

Justwant2Bhealthy
07-13-2008, 10:08 PM
I have heard of this idea before (not sure where); but I suspect that eventually your hard-earned weightloss would stop and then you'd start gaining again, in the end. I just can't see how it would work in the long run. Also, it isn't a healthy idea; for diabetics, for example: that could be dangerous to their health.

Some people treat themselves to ONE SERVING of their favorite dinner or dessert or snack food ONCE A WEEK; and have had good success with that.

Tomato
07-13-2008, 10:18 PM
I am returning to add something. I don't feel like I am cheating when I have something that one may say was an indulgence, and I don't feel guilty at all.
I said, at the very beginning of my weight loss journey (and I still maintain that viewpoint) that I want to leave as normally as possible without having to worry about "I am not allowed this, I am not allowed that" and that I don;t want to be on a diet because, I believe, there always comes a day when you stop following the diet and return to previous eating habits. I believe that moderation is the key - that's why I had a few teaspoonfuls of Haagen Dazs ice cream last night and after that, it went back to the freezer. Today, I was grocery shopping and I allowed myself seduced by a take out meal from the deli counter. 1/4 chicken (grilled), mashed potatoes and a dinner roll. (I was not hungry when I was at the store, but I bought it anyway).

So this is what I did with it at home: I ate the meat off the chicken, but I did not touch the skin (my mom always says that the best part - the crisp golden brown skin) - I gave it to the dogs as well as the fattier parts and the cartilage and whatever I else I did not eat - only clean bones went to the garbage. The mashed potatoes - I did eat them but I decided there was too much of them, so in fact, I had divided them into three parts and the remaining two parts will be a part of my lunch tomorrow and Tuesday (with another meat + veggies). It would not have been a problem at all to eat all the mashed potatoes today - in the past, I would have easily had that much plus another helping - but today, I decided that a little can easily go a long way.

JennyG
07-13-2008, 10:22 PM
Hey.
Sounds fun, but believe me I had my "cheat" days, when i used to get frustrated with my diet, but really I would eat so many calories, cuz it doesnt take long to add up, and I knew I couldn't do it for another while that I'd eat everything I craved the week before in one day, so really I would probly gain 3 pounds then I'd spend the next 6 days losing it again, its just not worth it to me....plus I joined WW 2 weeks ago and I don't feel deprived at all, I still eat super healthy but if I want a treat or some chinese food or other restaurant food I can have it, I just plan for it the day before, use less points through out the day and so forth. so binging is definitly not a factor for me, I find I am sick for 3 days and I feel so guilty that I hate myself for about 2 weeks. but hey thats my input, if it works for you then great!! Sometimes PPL just need that...but I think you should read the "beck diet solution" it is the best book I have ever read and I have never ever in the last 2 years had as much will power as I have had the last 2-3 weeks!!

http://www.3fatchicks.net/img/bar008/slider-scaleblue/lb/285/175/207/.png (http://www.3fatchicks.com/)

SoulBliss
07-13-2008, 10:46 PM
Nah, I just learned about the horrors of trans fat :( and my days of eating indiscriminately are over. I spent a traumatic afternoon clearing out my pantry of some beloved foods. I said my final good-byes.

Hey, I am SO excited for you! That is such good news, really. I am interested in how you learned this, because I want to continually help people know about these types of nutrition and health related issues and reach those who didn't know already.

Zima
07-13-2008, 10:57 PM
I've tried this before, and this is what happened: The one "pig out" day became "Oh, it's okay if I eat crap for breakfast the next morning too" and it just snowballed into eating crappy every day, and that's how I gained so much weight! If you have the will power for this, then more power to you, but I hope you're careful. Let us know how it works out for you.

ars
07-13-2008, 11:11 PM
I think in the long run it's more beneficial to allow yourself to eat the foods you want, just in moderation.

I admit I still partake of pizza and wings night in my home. However, instead of "eating until I'm sick", I have 1 small slice and 2 wings because those are the calories I have allotted for dinner on that day. I still get to enjoy my pizza and wings and not feel guilty about it afterwards.

rockstar87
07-13-2008, 11:37 PM
I don't like this for a couple of reasons. First, I count calories and if I ate whatever I wanted one day a week I'd easily negate my calorie deficit...easily. I don't like the idea of blowing all my hard work in a few hours. Second, I think the mentality of it can screw some people up. It's like you're just waiting for the **** of the week to be over so you can indulge. I think your diet can be something you can maintain permanently and having a binge-type day is sort of counterintuitive in that respect. Third, there's a reason people with binge eating disorder struggle with their weight...whether they have ten pounds to lose or fifty. It feels so out of control. I'd rather eat the foods I want and maybe go over my calories (but still count the calories) on occasion and then work to make up for it.

And I also agree with what someone said that the bad eating continues. You think, "Oh, whatever, I already blew it yesterday, what's one more piece of _____"

AJ113
07-14-2008, 02:47 AM
So, a big thumbs down so far. No-one has mentioned anything about the possibility that the sudden intake of energy could boost your metabolism and actually help to lose weight. Do you have any thoughts on this?

BTW clearly the pig out day is not applicable verbatim if you are carb intolerant, diabetic or you have some other condition. http://www.lose-inches.info/loseweight/loseweight.gif (http://www.lose-inches.info)

PhotoChick
07-14-2008, 02:59 AM
No-one has mentioned anything about the possibility that the sudden intake of energy could boost your metabolism and actually help to lose weight. Do you have any thoughts on this?
Yeah, I think as described, it's not gonna happen.

Calorie cycling is valid and does really well for some people. And shaking things up for your metabolism by eating more periodically can also work for some people. I think that's all very valid. If done reasonably and with intent

I also think that allowing yourself to go overboard on special occasions without guilt is very valid.

I think using it as an excuse to eat every unhealthy thing you can think of until you're sick ... again, slippery slope that can be used to justify binging.

.

Glory87
07-14-2008, 03:31 AM
When I was actively losing weight, I had two treat days - total. My birthday which was a meal, not a day (I had a nice dinner out in a restaurant with dessert) and Christmas day.

Now that I'm maintaining, I don't do a pig out day. I have a nice dinner out once a week.

Personally, there's no way I could lose weight or keep it off with an all day blow out once a week. I could do a LOT of caloric mayhem in a day and it would be really hard to get back on track.

CousinRockingChair
07-14-2008, 05:52 AM
gorging then going back to more restrictive eating to "compensate" is horribly reminiscent of how many eating disordered people think, myself included. slippery slope there.

yoyoma
07-14-2008, 06:54 AM
If you are doing it and it works for you, that's great.

For me personally, I wouldn't try it bc I know that when I go off plan I have a hard time getting back on. Also, having a pig out day would probably negate the "stomach shrinking" effects of my current many-small-meals approach and result in overall increased hunger.

Even if I wasn't as hungry the day after pigging out, there just aren't all that many calories to cut from my WoE. For example, one of my weaknesses is PB cups. Each one (full size) has 260 calories. Six of them contain more calories than my on plan budget for an entire day. It's not like that's all I'd eat (extra) on my pig out day.

Regarding the metabolism, I've found that exercise is key for me to have faster-than-molasis weight loss. Maybe shifting calories would bump it up another notch, and I might try moving my calories around if I do hit a real plateau. But I would still count them, rather than adding entire day of no-holds-barred eating.

preetyladyserenity
07-14-2008, 07:17 AM
I wouldn't call what I do a cheat day. I don't perceive it as that. What I do is that while from Monday to Saturday my caloric intake is between 1300-1600 calories on Sunday I can choose between a chocolate or sweet, or between Chinese take-out or Burger King with fries (not both a sweet and take out though).

I don't gorge myself with food nor do I have this full blast caloric intake where I simply pig out.

So still in my case, I don't feel it is a cheat day.

featherz
07-14-2008, 07:36 AM
I did cheat days for years. I didn't eat myself sick, but I did throw in junk I would not normally have during the week. I lost the weight I needed to lose and the cheat day fascination slowly dwindled away. Now I occasionally have a junky meal on a weekend and that's about it - if you do decide to do it the Body for Life way and actually follow the whole plan the cheat days for a lot of people start out HUGE but they get smaller and smaller over a period of time until your cheat day is 'wow, I had a slice of cheesecake'.
Obviously if you have any problems with binge eating this is not the way to go. I had way too many calories on my cheat days but I was not shoveling down massive amounts of food (which as we all know is the norm for junk - not much of it can add up!).

pinkcarnation
07-14-2008, 10:45 AM
Nah, I just learned about the horrors of trans fat and my days of eating indiscriminately are over. I spent a traumatic afternoon clearing out my pantry of some beloved foods. I said my final good-byes.

Hey, I am SO excited for you! That is such good news, really. I am interested in how you learned this, because I want to continually help people know about these types of nutrition and health related issues and reach those who didn't know already.

I read about trans fats in Ultrametabolism by Mark Hyman, M.D. While reading the labels in my pantry, I ran accross TBHQ. Had no clue, so I looked it up on the net. It is worse than tran fat, if possible. Workers must use protective clothing while working with it! They're using it because we're catching on to trans fat. My pantry needed a HazMat clean up. :dizzy:

SoulBliss
07-14-2008, 11:09 AM
Thanks for the response, Pinkcarnation! Everything you've shared provides support and more reasons why a whole foods diet is the best way to go!

fiberlover
07-14-2008, 12:15 PM
So, a big thumbs down so far. No-one has mentioned anything about the possibility that the sudden intake of energy could boost your metabolism and actually help to lose weight. Do you have any thoughts on this?

BTW clearly the pig out day is not applicable verbatim if you are carb intolerant, diabetic or you have some other condition.

I think there is a big difference in a little more calories to shake up your metabolism and a free-for-all eating fest. I don't know about anyone else, but I can really pack away the food. I could easily eat 3-4000 calories without batting an eyelash. I do that a couple times a year (our Christmas eve dinner and sometimes Thanksgiving).

I don't want to eat like that anymore on a regular basis. I have days where I have something extra, but rarely is it more than an extra 500 calories in a day. And it really feels indulgent when I do that. That's plenty of a shake up calorie wise, without doing a lot of damage to my weight loss progress.

PhotoChick
07-14-2008, 12:23 PM
No-one has mentioned anything about the possibility that the sudden intake of energy could boost your metabolism and actually help to lose weight. Do you have any thoughts on this?Another thought here ... a boost to your metabolism is a good thing, but eating a bunch of junk is more likely to spike your blood sugar levels resulting in a huge high followed by a massive crash, than it is to give you a healthy metabolism boost. You eat a bunch of fatty, salty junk and you'll just have digestive problems and retain water. You eat a bunch of sugary junk and you're putting a huge strain on your pancreas to balance your blood sugar. That kind of stress on your body is not worth the miniscule "boost" your metabolism will get before you crash.

.

AJ113
07-14-2008, 12:30 PM
OK thank you all for the input, I have two points for consideration. I realise of course that this type of behaviour has the potential to be catastrophic in more than one way, but my question now specifically is; assuming that I am able to stick to this one day per week without struggling for the rest of the week, could there actually be a weight loss benefit in terms of a boost to the metabolism?

Also, just a little perspective: Regardless of your capacity, there is a limit to how many calories you can eat in one day. Even if I manage 5000 calories, that is only about 3000 more than I need, which in turn represents less than one pound of body fat, so I don't think it's going to destroy my weight loss efforts in that respect.http://www.lose-inches.info/loseweight/loseweight.gif (http://www.lose-inches.info)

Mrs Snark
07-14-2008, 12:38 PM
Body for Life uses this strategy and if you read this blog, you'll see she used the "free day" effectively and stayed seriously ripped. http://skwigg.com/id70.html
DOn't miss out on her pictures, her blog is worth poking around in, she's a serious fitness fanatic. I don't think she does as many free days now, but you can check out her current food plan as well...

I say, if it works for you, then go for it. :)

fiberlover
07-14-2008, 12:38 PM
Also, just a little perspective: Regardless of your capacity, there is a limit to how many calories you can eat in one day. Even if I manage 5000 calories, that is only about 3000 more than I need, which in turn represents less than one pound of body fat, so I don't think it's going to destroy my weight loss efforts in that respect.

I know a lot of people say 3500 calories is a pound, and on paper, that is correct. *However*, multiple studies have shown that overweight people and those who have lost and are maintaining actually gain weight on less calories than a person who was never overweight. You might want to check about the book Thin For Life, quite interesting.

I think this is the reason so many people get frustrated when the scale shows what would seem to be an inappropriate gain for calories consumed (on top of the water retention).

PhotoChick
07-14-2008, 01:23 PM
Also, just a little perspective: Regardless of your capacity, there is a limit to how many calories you can eat in one day.Nope. Not really. :)

Again going back to your original post where you said:where you eat anything and everything - french fries, chips, candies, cakes, pizzas etc, no holds barred, eat until you nearly make yourself sick.Eating like this, it would be QUITE easy to eat 10,000 calories or more, depending on your capacity. One meal at Outback with appetizer (1/2 a blooming onion), steak, loaded baked potato, salad with dressing, and dessert, could top 5,000 cals w/out blinking. Add some alcohol to that ... a couple of beers or some mixed drinks ... !

And that's just one meal that many of us here could easily eat w/out feeling sick - and probably have in the past. :)

I can easily see putting away 10,000+ cals in a single day if you really ate "no holds barred until you nearly make yourself sick".

.

PhotoChick
07-14-2008, 01:26 PM
could there actually be a weight loss benefit in terms of a boost to the metabolism?My answer to this is ... I really don't think so, no.

Honestly it seems to me like you're looking for 3FC to give you "permission" to have a gorge-fest and justify it with "it'll boost my metabolism and help me lose weight". I think you're going to be hard pressed to find anyone here who will support that point of view. Most of us will support the concept of a free/cheat/treat day (or meal, or item) but so far in 3 pages, you've not found anyone who has said that taking a day to go all out is going ot help you. :)

.

JulieJ08
07-14-2008, 01:31 PM
I've seen it mentioned many times about having a day with more calories to prevent a lowered metabolism. What I have never seen is any evidence for how often you should eat more or how much. All I ever see are statements/opinions. It's definitely a concept that interests me, but it seems like magical thinking. Hopefully some time when I have the chance I'll remember to research it a little bit. Anybody already know what evidence these recommendations are based on, besides just theories based on general ideas? And any evidence for how often/how much is needed?

SoulBliss
07-14-2008, 01:39 PM
I've seen it mentioned many times about having a day with more calories to prevent a lowered metabolism. What I have never seen is any evidence for how often you should eat more or how much. All I ever see are statements/opinions. It's definitely a concept that interests me, but it seems like magical thinking. Hopefully some time when I have the chance I'll remember to research it a little bit. Anybody already know what evidence these recommendations are based on, besides just theories based on general ideas? And any evidence for how often/how much is needed?

MORE calories CAN be a good thing, IF you are "calorie cycling". It's worked for me before. It works for a lot of people here. :)

junebug41
07-14-2008, 01:42 PM
Calorie cycling can be a very effective tool, but he is not describing calorie cycling, in which you are counting your calories and not exceeding an RDA by such an extreme amount. No, that would be bingeing.

JulieJ08
07-14-2008, 01:54 PM
MORE calories CAN be a good thing, IF you are "calorie cycling". It's worked for me before. It works for a lot of people here. :)

That's kinda my point. I see it mentioned all the time (not even trying to distinguish cycling vs one cheat day here), but I have no idea of any studies it is based on. Besides studies of one, which I am not bashing :o

midwife
07-14-2008, 01:56 PM
That's a good question, Julie.

My personal trainer recommends a "cheat day." Since I do not like the word "cheat" I call it a free day.

There are benefits to my free day. A major one is delayed gratification. I am pretty strict during the week and if I am tempted by something, I can choose to not eat in then and plan to eat it on my free day. I rarely still want it then, but if I do, then I have it. This is also handy for family gatherings, holidays, etc. I can have a day where I am not strict and still do well.

Now, I tried to pin my trainer down on *how many* calories I should have on my free day. I was a calorie counter for a long time. Now I do more of an exchange program where I strive for servings of protein, veg, fats, etc. So I was asking for an answer that made sense for my calorie counting frame of reference, whereas my personal trainer is not that into calorie counting. She is into feeding muscle. And muscles like calories. Mostly protein calories.

So I have had to change my eating paradigm to one that is not driven by calories as much as by nutrients. All this to say, I did not get an answer from my personal trainer about how many calories I should consume on my free day to shake up my metabolism. She gave me an example of 2 slices of pizza for dinner. Ok, I can get that. Eat a food for dinner that I might not usually have at all during the week, but in an appropriate portion.

When I first started eating this way, with a "free day", my free days were greasy disasters. Ugh. I really would eat everything that I did not eat during the week and I felt like crap. It was a great learning experience for me. The way I would eat on my free day was how I used to eat *all the time*. Except that it was making me sick! So, yeah, I was still losing, but the food choices I made on my free days were not healthy.

My body was beginning to crave healthy food. And smaller quantities as well. So I had a regular reminder of how much better I feel eating healthy foods. Which was lovely.

Now my free days consist of maybe about 300-500 calories more than I would have on a typical day. This allows me to have a tortilla with my beans or pasta for dinner (look out!) or split a dessert with someone. I still use the concept of the free day because it really helps keep me on plan on the other 6 days and I don't beat myself up for deviating from my plan once a week.

My serving sizes remain appropriate and there are just some foods I don't eat anymore cause they make me sick.

I would consider the scenario presented in the OP to be a day long binge, and for my life and my situation, I am just not in to that anymore. At this point I am maintaining with my 500 calorie splurge per week. If I dropped that, would I lose weight? According to calore counting theory, probably. Eventually. According to the theory of mixing things up to boost my metabolism, dropping those calories might actually hinder more fat loss. But I'm pretty happy with where I am at---I am happy with my weight, body fat %, exercise, and food choices.

featherz
07-14-2008, 01:57 PM
I really do think my cheat days helped. I'm able to maintain now at a much higher calorie range than others I see on these boards of similar height weight and age - I never did anything drastic, never went below 1500 on 'diet' days and probably had 4-5K on a full 'free day', BFL style. Now I maintain on 2K-2200.
I never had a problem getting back on track the next day. Would I do it again? Maybe. I can't eat much junk now without getting queasy so I end up in a junky restaurant picking the meat out of the bun and skipping the fries. not much of a cheat there. :)

Now I have cheat days similar to midwife's - some ice cream with hubby, some chocolate chips in the protein pancakes, a lil extra peanut butter - probably 3-400 calories up, if that. Excepting my birthday and Xmas - those are 'no count' days. :)

BlueToBlue
07-14-2008, 01:58 PM
Besides all the other excellent comments here, I have to say that if I had one day a week where I ate like you describe, I would not be able to lose weight. You're talking a lot of calories in one day; for me, it would end up negating any deficits I had managed to create the rest of the week. And I don't think there's any scientific proof that eating like that on one day would significantly change your metabolism on the following days. When I have off plan days (just off plan, not eat until I'm sick days), it usually stalls my weight loss for a week or longer, rather than speeding it up.

When I have off plan days, the following days are just miserable in terms of getting back on plan. I have all sorts of cravings, I'm hungry, and my blood sugar is out of whack so I have that shakey-hungry feeling. It's really a struggle to get through them; I call them "white-knuckle days". It can take almost a week before I'm really back to where I'm in the zone and comfortable with how I'm eating. I'm not sure the binge is worth the days that follow it and I definitely wouldn't want every week to be a struggle like that.

I'm really trying to have a healthier relationship with food; one that involves only eating until I'm full. What you describe sounds a lot like BED (Binge Eating Disorder), and I already struggle enough with that.

I do have lots of meals and even days where I am off plan. Dinner out with friends, vacations, business trips, but they are all triggered by a social or professional event. I don't have days where I just eat off plan for no reason and I definitely try to limit off-plan days/meals to less than one per week. I am hoping to be able to allow myself a few more treats in maintenance, but I'm thinking maybe dinner out once in a while or a baked good from the farmer's market, not an entire day of eating so much that I'm sick.

Bonita Applebaum
07-14-2008, 02:54 PM
I don't have cheat days as much as I have cheat moments. Those usually happen on the weekend. I'll usually eat a healthy breakfast but if we go out to eat later on that night, I'll allow myself to have whatever I want. Dessert included.;)

streudel423
07-14-2008, 04:33 PM
Four years ago I was 125 pounds, my happiest weight ever. Well, I gained weight over the past 4 years and have fluctuate between 140-160. Each week over the past four years, I gave myself a "cheat day." I would eat EVERYTHING I wanted, so much that I felt bloated until 2 or 3 days later. This is the first week in 4 years I have NOT had a cheat day. I started Jenny Craig, and they recommend that for at least the first few weeks you stay completely on plan. When I was dieting on my own, I never thought it was possible for me to go a week without a "binge."

However, this is the first week in 4 years that I went a week without a cheat day. Guess what...I survived! I also felt AWESOME the day after what would have been my cheat day. I didn't feel nasty when I woke up this morning.

I, personally, believe that part of the reason I couldn't lose the weight over the past several years is because of my cheat day. It was sickening how much I ate.

Once I get throught these first few weeks of Jenny Craig, he JC plan calls for a "splurge" ITEM (not an ENTIRE DAY) one or two days a week. I really think i will benefit more from more control like that.

This is a lifestyle for me.

I think back over all the days I've binged and think, "Really, where has it gotten me? The satisfaction was temporary and only lasted 24 hours!"

That's just my opinion though.

EZMONEY
07-14-2008, 11:00 PM
I became overweight by allowing myself to have too many free days! I was thin most of my life...6'0" and about 155 most of my adult life...I worked very hard taping drywall from the time I was 16 years old. I burned a ton of calories a day...smoked...and drank gallons of coffee to get me to dinner...

Why should I eat breakfast?...I could get a 10 minute earlier start to work...

Why stop for lunch?...I could work through it and make that $$$

Then I would get home and down a pizza no problem...4 hamburgers to start with...chips and dip for a after dinner snack...

Every day was a free day!

Well of course it finally all came due!....201 and still 6'0"

Everyone has their very own plan that works/or not for them.

For me I decided to do something...I work pretty hard at watching what I eat and getting my exercise in. I don't work as hard as I should but I do work as hard as I want to right now.

I don't have a free day but if I want to go for Mexican food and have cheese enchiladas for dinner I do it...but most of the time Angie and I do our Friday Night Splits.

If I want to have pizza and watch the fights or game with my boys I do it...I just have a salad first and I don't eat an entire pizza anymore.

I don't worry about having too much to eat on days like :turkey: Thanksgiving. Angie and I just get out and :running: do a 5K...The Turkey Trot to start the day....then I eat whatever I want, I just don't eat until I make myself sick.

I think if you deprive yourself it just leads to trouble.

When I started this journey I told myself I would make it a point to not eat at fast food places for my first choice on the week-end or other convenient circumstances. For various reasons I have been to fast food 4 times in almost a year...all those times I ate pretty sensible. I have not felt deprived.

I had pizza for the fights last week-end....I just did some treadmill miles on my usual day off, Sunday...watched a little TV while I did it...didn't feel real guilty about the pizza...I was, honestly a little bummed my weight went up a bit...but I knew it would...it is down now.

I had some high calorie hot dogs on the 4th of July...knew my weight would go up...it's back now. Had my entire family here for a shuffleboard tournament, I wasn't going to ruin my day by worrying about a few extra calories...I did get up and did my miles the next morning though.

I don't know if cheat or free days work or not. They aren't for me....

Personally I think FREE and CHEAT DAYS are a conspiracy by our government and a deal with the Mickey D's and Pizza Huts of the world :devil:

I think I fall somewhere in the middle....many of you have flat :kickbutt: kicked my butt this last year...on the other hand some of you :hug: have not.

I hope you all find your very own secret to success!

rockstar87
07-14-2008, 11:20 PM
I think something a lot of people forget is while it IS calories in vs. calories out in a very literal sense there's all this new research coming out on nutrigenomics that talks about the quality of calories you're eating. If we're talking about trying to give your metabolism a "boost" I think eating good, clean foods would be far more beneficial in maximizing your metabolism than any sort of cheat day. Your genes are dynamic...the foods we eat and the environment we live in directly impacts the expression of our genes, which then dictate our basal metabolic rate. The junk foods you would probably eat on your cheat day are pretty much poison for your body and do nothing to benefit you, if anything they hurt your metabolism. Trans fats, processed sugar, simple carbs...they do nothing but hurt you. I can't imagine you would benefit for a high calorie day if you were eating junk the entire time...

Now, that's not to say never have a treat again. Of course the occasional meal or dessert is something everyone would indulge in once in a while...but it won't help your metabolism and I think once a week would only hinder weight loss.

Calorie cycling or taking a high calorie day once a week (like if you usually eat 1500, go to 2000 once a week) can be very beneficial to some people. That doesn't mean it's your day to eat 2000 calories of junk though, you just eat more good, high quality food. I know some people see a noticeable difference in their weight loss when they follow something like this. It's the same idea of giving your metabolism a boost but it's with good foods that will actually benefit your body and help sustain your basal metabolic rate.

shelby897
07-14-2008, 11:46 PM
What ever happened to "eating because you are hungry"? :dizzy:

I spent the last 30 years of my life having "cheat days", "eat all you want" days -- not once taking into account "is this what I'm really hungry for?". I think I've had enough of these days.

Personally, as a recovering binger eater/bulimic -- I can't recover from a binge day. I'm doing WW -- where I am able to have flexibility with what I eat, eat what I want and I'm learning to stop when I'm full -- that the "treat" I'm craving will still be there when I'm hungry again.

What is the point of eating everything you possibly can on one day -- is this some kind of artery clogging marathon we are on or are we trying to retrain our bodies to eat well, to provide the fuel we need from the foods that are best for us and to take care of ourselves?

PhotoChick
07-15-2008, 12:09 AM
What ever happened to "eating because you are hungry"?
The problem with that for many of us is that we've conditioned our bodies to NOT understand what "hungry" really is. Many of us are emotional eaters, stress eaters, habit eaters, boredom eaters ... and we confuse those emotions, feelings, or situations with "hunger".

It's super easy to say "well just eat when you're hungry" but it's not that easy for many of us. It's only in the last 18 months that I've learned what REAL hunger feels like - when I'm actually hungry and when I'm just craving something or trying to self-medicate with food.

.

shelby897
07-15-2008, 12:19 AM
Photochick -- I wasn't trying to simplify a solution to eating/binging. I'm just learning to listen to my body cues instead of my brain/emotions to know when it's time to eat and more importantly for me, when it's time to stop. I'm not trying to say it's easy -- I was just trying to point out that planning to binge is not particularly a way to learn to eat healthy. Instead of using all that energy to plan and carry out a binge day, maybe the effort/energy would be better spent working on healthy eating and planning.

kaplods
07-15-2008, 12:43 AM
I'm not sure that I ever had an "off" switch to my hunger, or whether decades of dieting (starting at age 5) turned off the switch. Since I have few or no pre-dieting memories, I'm not sure.

But since I found what triggered my obsessive hunger (hormones and carbs), by eliminating them, I don't just eliminate "false" hunger, I've eliminated all hunger. A few days ago, I got up a little late, and decided to work on a couple things before breakfast (I tend to be a bit nauseous in the mornings, from sinus problems, so it's usually an hour before food even sounds appealing). I was planning on eating no later than 11:00, but I got busy and forgot. I started getting REALLY annoyed with hubby, and he asked me when I had last eaten. It was now almost 4pm and I hadn't eaten since the evening before. Fifteen minutes of annoyance was the only hunger signal I had received and that was nearly 20 hours after having eaten (and I didn't even notice it, hubby did).

As a result, without exchange planning as a portion-control mechanism, I would either eat too little or too much, because I can't trust my hunger. It shows up when it shouldn't, and is no where to be found when it is needed (sounds like a lousy friend, doesn't it).

AJ113
07-15-2008, 08:41 AM
My answer to this is ... I really don't think so, no.

Honestly it seems to me like you're looking for 3FC to give you "permission" to have a gorge-fest and justify it with "it'll boost my metabolism and help me lose weight". I think you're going to be hard pressed to find anyone here who will support that point of view. Most of us will support the concept of a free/cheat/treat day (or meal, or item) but so far in 3 pages, you've not found anyone who has said that taking a day to go all out is going ot help you. :)

.Just to clarify; you couldn't be further from the truth. The only "permission" I need is my own. I'm only trying to stimulate discussion, focusing on "outside of the box" stuff. I have a natural bent for challenging conventional wisdom, which is what I'm doing here.

Diva
07-15-2008, 11:07 AM
I have a real problem with this.

I don't at all have a problem with the idea of a day where you don't count calories or where you eat off plan or where you indulge your cravings or whatever. I prefer not to call it a "cheat" day because for me ... well ... what would I be "cheating" on? My life?

There are plenty of days that I am less careful about what I eat or that I say "today I'm not going to count calories, I'm just going to eat what I want and not feel bad about it later". Most of the time those days include going out to eat with friends or a party or something like that.

But I have a huge problem with the mindset of intentionally going out and eating all the worst possible foods for you, and intentionally doing it in quantities that will make you feel like crap.

To me that sounds like giving yourself permission to binge and that is a slippery slope.

.

I agree with this 100%.

ninepaw
07-16-2008, 02:27 PM
I said, at the very beginning of my weight loss journey (and I still maintain that viewpoint) that I want to leave as normally as possible without having to worry about "I am not allowed this, I am not allowed that" and that I don;t want to be on a diet because, I believe, there always comes a day when you stop following the diet and return to previous eating habits.

Amen to that! This time around with weight loss i completely turned some of the things I did previously upside-down. I used to do the can't have this, can't have that approach, and I ALWAYS messed it up. Now I just try to eat good things for the most part, and when I have the "bad" things, I don't feel bad about it at all. The "bad" food is ALWAYS going to be there, it's really just a matter of how you decide to handle it.

flabbyblue
07-16-2008, 02:39 PM
I don't do ''pig out'' days, but until now (I am going to start Fat Smashers this week) I did have Saturdays where I ate as I wished. I don't mean I pigged out, binged, or went on a food rampage at all - but if I wanted a slice of bread, I didn't exert what little willpower I had to refrain - I just ate the bread. If I wanted popcorn at the movies with DH, I got a bag of popcorn.

I guess it was a cheat day in moderation - eat what you want, but dont go overboard. I know I still went over in calories those days (believe me, you can't eat an ounce of movie popcorn and not go over in calories >.<) but I'm not the kind of person who can keep to a restrictive diet without allowing myself some ''leg room'' - and Saturdays were that leg room. It never seemed to hurt me at all - I haven't gained weight in over a year, but I've really only been maintaining my huge frame. So now is the time for me to actually lose :D

PhotoChick
07-16-2008, 02:51 PM
eat what you want, but dont go overboard. I know I still went over in calories those days (believe me, you can't eat an ounce of movie popcorn and not go over in calories >.<) but I'm not the kind of person who can keep to a restrictive diet without allowing myself some ''leg room'' - and Saturdays were that leg room.
That's totally my philosophy. I mean... this is life. You can't deprive yourself your whole life. But you don't have to go wild and crazy either. I hover back and forth between maintaining and losing, depending on how often I'm stricter about my calories ... but either way I know I CAN eat whatever I want. I just have to not lose my mind.

(oh and btw - badger, badger, badger, badger ... a snake, a snake!!! - still cracks me up!)

.

ladybugnessa
07-16-2008, 03:18 PM
Nope. Not really. :)

Again going back to your original post where you said:Eating like this, it would be QUITE easy to eat 10,000 calories or more, depending on your capacity. One meal at Outback with appetizer (1/2 a blooming onion), steak, loaded baked potato, salad with dressing, and dessert, could top 5,000 cals w/out blinking. Add some alcohol to that ... a couple of beers or some mixed drinks ... !

And that's just one meal that many of us here could easily eat w/out feeling sick - and probably have in the past. :)

I can easily see putting away 10,000+ cals in a single day if you really ate "no holds barred until you nearly make yourself sick".

.

i agree. even more.
easily

BTDT...

Tomato
07-16-2008, 03:18 PM
Amen to that! This time around with weight loss i completely turned some of the things I did previously upside-down. I used to do the can't have this, can't have that approach, and I ALWAYS messed it up. Now I just try to eat good things for the most part, and when I have the "bad" things, I don't feel bad about it at all. The "bad" food is ALWAYS going to be there, it's really just a matter of how you decide to handle it.

Oy, oy, oy! I really MUST proofread before posting! Of course I meant "I wanted to LIVE" (not LEAVE) - I actually CAN spell although sometimes it looks like I cannot. :rollpin:

just keep swimming
07-16-2008, 03:47 PM
I definitely have a free day once a week, where I really do eat whatever I want. But I still only eat when hungry, because what I want now is different than what I used to want. I eat different food those days (the "unhealthy" kind :)), and it definitely adds up to more calories, but never goes much over 2000 (I always add it up anyway, because I am a calorie-counting addict ;)). I need my free day, because I need to be able to tell myself whenever I crave something that I can have it on Saturday. I just do. I usually don't even want it anymore by then, but I COULD have it, and not have to feel guilty about it.

AJ113
07-17-2008, 08:51 AM
I need my free day, because I need to be able to tell myself whenever I crave something that I can have it on Saturday. I just do. I usually don't even want it anymore by then, but I COULD have it, and not have to feel guilty about it.Yes, that's certainly one of the points I was making earlier on. The fact that you know you can have your treat on Saturday helps you to stay away from it during the week.

A quick update, I did the full works last Saturday. By Monday I was registering two pounds gained on Friday's weight; by this morning I had lost a pound against Friday's weight. Some of the extra weight on Monday was probably due to water, but if I actually weigh less now, I figure that at least some of that weight loss must be due to body fat being burned.

Mrs Snark
07-17-2008, 09:05 AM
As a person with a serious binge eating problem, there simply are things I can NOT eat. Period. I simply can't have "a little of this" and a "little of that", it doesn't work for me. Fortunately, the things I've decided to simply give up permanently are just trash junk food anyway and I certainly don't need them to live a healthy, happy life.

Food is no longer "entertainment", but is about giving my body healthy fuel to do the things I like to do in life. And I'm not going to give trashy food some mythical power over my life as if, "OMG I can't live without at least a taste of potato chips now and then." Because YES I CAN. I WILL "deprive" myself my whole life of certain crappy foods and I'm totally ok with that. Those items just aren't THAT important in the big picture, they have no special power, they are just... well... crappy food choices. Nothing very logically appealing about that. Given all the luscious things I CHOOSE to eat that ARE wonderful for my body, I just can't bring myself to complain about my lot in life. :)

Everyone has a different approach to this, everyone should do what works for them. Some of us will indeed give up foods forever, but then, maybe we WANT to give them up. I actually like the idea of not ever putting another geasy french fry in my mouth again, I deserve better than that.

ladybugnessa
07-17-2008, 11:28 AM
I THOUGHT I beat my binge eating. this thread dragged it up for me and I have to admit that part of my binge last night was to see how many calories I could eat...

junebug41
07-17-2008, 11:33 AM
I THOUGHT I beat my binge eating. this thread dragged it up for me and I have to admit that part of my binge last night was to see how many calories I could eat...

Nessa, I'm so sorry :hug:

I always think I've been at this long enough to know better, but I just need to accept there will be bumps in the road just like what you described. This too shall pass.

shelby897
07-17-2008, 11:59 AM
Nessa -- I get that way -- I hope you are able to get back on track today.
Apparently there are people who can binge for a day and get right back on track. I think the majority of us are unable to do and I personally find the whole idea of binging totally unhealthy, even if you can stop at one day. I've also spent 30 years trying to stop binging, why would I want to try to include it in my daily life?? :dizzy:

ladybugnessa
07-17-2008, 12:01 PM
so far today food wise i'm fine
but emotionally i'm destroyed.

shelby897
07-17-2008, 12:12 PM
:hug: For me at least I know the day after binging I'm no longer craving the food, but emotionally I'm drained and that tends to lead me back to "self comforting" with more food. Hang in there -- if you make it through today do you thinking emotionally you'll feel better tomorrow??

ladybugnessa
07-17-2008, 12:25 PM
see and for me it sets off the I want MORE mentality... all i can think about is MORE....

JulieJ08
07-17-2008, 01:17 PM
so far today food wise i'm fine
but emotionally i'm destroyed.

Hang in there :hug: You have so much experience to draw on :carrot:

Mrs Snark
07-17-2008, 03:20 PM
see and for me it sets off the I want MORE mentality... all i can think about is MORE....

Hang in there! :hug: