How to never ‘cheat’ your diet ever again


We have all been there at one point or another, we have put on some extra pounds and want to shift it. So in comes the dreaded diet, whatever it might be, weight watchers, low carb, low fat etc. They all involved restriction, not only a restriction in caloric intake, but a restriction of food choice. No more chocolate, alcohol, refined carbs…

We stick to our diet, we lose weight fast, but progress slows, our motivation dithers. We also become very bored of our diet, we crave chocolate like mad. All we want to do is relax and enjoy eating something that isn’t a chicken salad. So eventually we break, we ‘cheat’, whatever it might be, a cake that someone brought into work, or a night out on the town that ended at a chippy. Whenever there is food restriction, a cheat is inevitable. What follows a cheat? Days off our diet, and we put a load of weight back on.

What if I told you I could stop you ever cheating? What if I told you I could make your diet more of a lifestyle? What if I told you that you need not restrict chocolate, alcohol or whatever food you banned previously? Sounds good right? It really is.

Me and all my clients enjoy a hugely varied diet, nothing is off the menu. If we want chocolate, we have it. If we have a night out and want to drink, we can. This makes our diets livable, a lifestyle if you will. However, I would be lying if I said we did not restrict. We do, but we do not restrict food choices. You see to lose fat we need a calorie deficit, we must burn more than we take in, there is no getting away from that. However, we can achieve a calorie deficit while eating foods we love.

Let me give you an example, Sam started a job a few months ago. He put all his time and effort into this job, and so skipped the gym and ended up eating one too many takeaways. So what did I do for Sam? I worked out how many calories he needed to maintain his current weight and lifestyle, and from there I gave him a training programme and nutritional protocol to provide a calorie deficit.

Sam would track what he ate each day,  totting up the total calories and protein he had consumed. He could eat what he liked so long as:

  1. He landed in the calorie and protein range provided by me.
  2. He consumed 80% of his diet from unprocessed, natural, wholesome foods.

This meant that as log as Sam got in plenty of fruit, vegetables and a variety of whole grains and lean protein, he could if he so pleased eat chocolate, or ice cream or whatever, so long as it didn’t inhibit his protein and calorie goals. Sam could therefore enjoy any foods he liked, none were off the menu. The only restriction anyone need have when dieting is a calorie one.

Therefore, Sam never felt the need to ‘cheat’ on his diet. If he ever had a craving for something sweet, he made sure to account for it and align it with his nutritional aims for the day. By allowing himself to eat the things he loved now and then, he never broke his diet, it became a sustainable lifestyle. Sam lost all the fat and more by following this non-restrictive diet.

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By: Stephen Hall
My name is Steve Hall, I am the creator, owner and head coach of Revive. Revive provides online nutrition, training and lifestyle coaching. Helping people worldwide get lean, fit, swole, shredded and strong, whilst they learn how to make this lifestyle complement, not rule their lives. My subject areas therefore include food, exercise and everything that comes with it, from recipes to workouts.

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