Myself and my boyfriend, Chris (DJ Rehab). Pictured here he was DJ’ing the biggest New Year’s Eve party in Charleston; Charleston Wonderland. (Picture Credit Dana K. Davis). Yes-you can be fit and healthy and still have fun.
When you are on the path of self empowerment via health and fitness, it can seem like an all or nothing kind of mentality. I’m here to tell you that it doesn’t have to be that way.
I love to tell clients that YES they can still have bacon. They can still indulge in cupcakes. You can still have a drink with friends occasionally. It’s like I just lifted a 100 lb weight off their shoulders…like “did my trainer really just say that?” Yes, Yes I did.
There’s a popular thing that people hear about a lot, and it’s called the 80/20 rule. Now depending on your goals it can be more like 90/10. Basically: 80% of the time, you are strict on your nutrition and going to the gym. 20% of the time…go ahead and have that cake at the office party or go out with your friends. The thing here is to find your BALANCE and see what works for you, while still seeing results. Everyone is different. Some can have bacon and oatmeal every morning, and for some it can impede your progress or slow it down. This is truly a hit or miss thing, you have to go through a lot of trial and error and find your sweet spot.
A lot of it is self intuition. If you still feel good post “cheat” and you are able to hop right back on the horse and go back to healthy eating and workouts the very next day or even the same day-it may be safe to say that you are just fine with what you chose to indulge in. This is just one technique of many. Also please remember there are NO cheat DAYS-ever. There can be cheat meals-but not entire days! Many people (like myself) plan their cheat, I like to do a once a week thing, personally. I can still stay on track and it doesn’t hinder myself from maintaining my fitness.
Bottom line: it’s going to take some time. Keep a journal of how you feel after you eat and/or drink certain things. See if anything “trends” in your performance after indulging. What’s important here is that the majority of the time, you are treating yourself like an athlete; eating and hydrating properly while still working out most days of the week.
Hon, you still have to LIVE. I don’t want you to be that person at a birthday party internally screaming because you want a slice of birthday cake. HAVE THE CAKE. (Just one slice though! Portion control is important for these kind of things!) Have a cookie. Have a beer. If you are able to control yourself and keep yourself within reasonable limits OCCASIONALLY…than these kind of things are ok.
Back to the picture above…that evening was a perfect example of myself still having fun, but I still went to the gym pre and post event. Nothing else changed for me nutritionally. That evening though-I did have some adult beverages and ate a bit more than I usually do…because it was just one evening, and I knew I was going to be back in the gym the very next day.
Find your balance. Live your life. Always remember your goals. Being fit and healthy doesn’t have to be a miserable thing.