Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Cheating on the Diet

My husband said something the other night that's stuck in my head. It's really been bugging me. We had been relaxing on the back patio after the 4th of July party, and talking about several things, including my diet. He mentioned how he really appreciated that I made treats / dessert for the party even though I couldn't partake myself. He had laughed at me earlier in the day when I was making dark chocolate ganache dipped brownie bites (yeah, they're as good as they sound), and got chocolate on my hands then immediately turned to the sink to rinse it off. He asked, "you can't even lick the chocolate off your hand?" "Nope," I replied. "That would be cheating." "C'mon, just that little bit?" "Yep, just that little bit." I want to make that really, really clear before I go further, I do not, have not, will not, cheat on the diet.


So what'd he say that's been bugging me? He sat there at the patio table and said... "well, you just aren't tempted by food."


HUH??? WHAT???


It lead to an interesting conversation, where we both picked up a few things. One thing I learned was that people in general have the impression that I am above food-temptations. Get out. Seriously. I am as tempted as anyone else. But here's the fine line... being tempted does not require succumbing to temptation. You can be tempted, and NOT give in. 
I don't cheat on the diet, therefore I don't have cravings/temptations... yeah, right. Want to know why I don't cheat on the diet?


Is it because I have the willpower of Superman? Um, no.
Is it because I don't have any desire to cheat? Hahahah. No. See above.
Is it because I'm so dedicated to reaching my goal? Meh, that's sort of it, in a way.


I don't cheat on the diet because I know the science behind the diet. I know that the process I am undergoing is retraining my body, my metabolism, to burn fat as fuel instead of carbs. Part of the process is also a war to protect hard-earned muscle, while subsisting on very low calories and carbs. There are an abundance of "systems" in the body that all work together, and controlling/channeling those systems to make them do what you want them to is like a cross between a directing a symphony and herding cats.


So what's all that mean, and what's it have to do with cheating on the diet?


It means that if I give in and have that piece of chocolate, that treat, that drink, or that single raspberry at the wrong time of day I am jeopardizing the process. I am providing sugar (simple carb) at a time when my body has been told to only burn fat - and suddenly the new systems shut off and it's back to carb-burning-normal; all these weeks of work could be threatened. Yes, over a simple raspberry at the wrong time of day. Yes, over a tiny piece of treat. Yes, this could all simply be theory and it might not happen, but I am not willing to take the chance. 


It's been said that competition diet is a science experiment. Oh so very true, and just one more reason to stay on track - if you don't stay on track, you can't ever know if the experiment succeeded or failed, because you changed it. Does that make sense?


So, I won't risk it. While I'd love to go face-first into a very large bowl of raspberries in fudge sauce (just one of my many food fantasies right now), I won't. I can't tell you how many times I've heard variations on the ..."just one won't hurt". Just one drink, just one treat, just one meal, just one...  and the folks who say it truly believe it (and for some reason think they're doing me a favor by offering me the "it's just one" out). But doing what I'm doing (competition diet), I know better. Yes, just one can and WILL hurt. Remember the one treat meal I had way back when that took me a week to lose the water weight from? Thanks, but I'll skip the just-one's and trust the process.


But please, please don't think I'm not tempted. I dream about food, folks. Seriously. It's hard, but I am committed (or should be committed? ... you say tomato, I say...LOL!) to my path, I do trust the process, and more - I have absolute faith in my coach and I know that she'll keep me moving in the right direction and make adjustments when necessary. I will not cheat myself. I promised to give this my all, and I am. Mentally, physically, and nutritionally.

12 comments:

  1. OMG I hear you completely on this! so many times people have tried to "tempt" me with treats. Whether its in the office or somewhere else.

    Its difficult to say no but the end goal is in sight!: )

    good on you for being able to bake and not want any...that's just punishment for me :)

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  2. Girl, you've got it. The understanding and the drive that's required in order to diet successfully for a show. You're absolutely right - "just one" IS a big deal, and I'm so impressed with your mindset about it. Stay strong and focused; I'm cheering you on!!

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  3. Try other foods if you want to experiment on your diet plans.

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  4. I'm currently entered in a transformation contest and I'm on day 44 without cheating once. I totally agree with the "don't want to screw with experiment" mentality. If I cheat then my feedback will be incorrect. Can't have that! :) I really enjoy your website!

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  5. I think it is great that you have come to that point in your journey, I am working my to that point. I am getting more serious about my diet everyday. I like how you have learned the science of the diet.

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  6. So, so true! I got so used to not licking my fingers when making food for others, that I still do it and I'm not prepping! LOL! I was making a peanut butter and jelly sandwich the other day and got a little peanut butter on my finger, I went to wash it off and thought, Wait a minute, I could lick this off! LOL!

    Way to go, Chelle! Those that have not gone through it, do not understand it. Show them how it's done! xoxo

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  7. I just found your blog through karatenurse. I'm loving it! I admire your determination and WILL POWER to not cheat on your diet! During my prep I was allowed "Cheat Meals" and though I did great at my show I sometimes wonder how I would have looked if I wouldn't have had those cheat meals. Its all a learning process and experiment like you said. I trust the process as well and I cant wait to see how you come in at your show! Way to go!!!

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  8. Great Job Chelle!! Kaii528

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  9. I would trade my husband for a bowl of banana soft serve, I miss that tons! Keep up the good work the end is in sight!

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  10. Peggy - ROFLMAO!!! OMG, I so totally understand that! LOL!

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  11. I once gave up sweets and a friend convinced me to have just one bite of a chocolate- covered strawberry one day and even tho it was JUST ONE BITE, my willpower went to heck from that point on. It's not the bite of chocolate that did it, it's the fact that I gave in and that goofed me up so stay strong everyone- the mental part is the hardest :)

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  12. Your Awesome! Hang tough! It's a slippery slope. If one bite wasn't bad then why are the big people the ones who say that???

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