I introduced the continuation of my experiment with Intermittent Fasting in the past two series 101 and 201. The newest addition to my experiment has been Cheat Days and this past Sunday was definitely a Cheat Day.
First off, what’s the meaning and purpose behind a Cheat Day. Cheat Days and Meals are widely discussed about in the areas of fitness and bodybuilding. There are those who think highly of them while others believe they serve no purpose. I’ve done dieting with strictly no cheat days or meals involved and had great results. It was definitely tough not only physically but also mentally.
Let make this clear, although I’m saying Cheat Days are beneficial, it’s not for everyone. The use of Cheat Days can be implemented once you have a grasp on your eating habits and nutrition. I would never recommend someone who is overweight to take part in cheat days, maybe only a cheat meal if anything to give them a mental break.
BENEFITS OF CHEAT DAYS
Now there are a few theories behind the benefits of a cheat day. Cheat Days are definitely something that many debate on whether they are useful or not. It’s all about figuring it out for yourself.
Psychological break. Being on a strict diet and especially one that deals with being in a caloric deficit can not only take a lot of you physically but mentally as well. There’s been moments when I was just not myself, like the SNICKERS commercials say, “You’re not you when you’re hungry.” So true. But this also lets you get out of the rules a bit and enjoy food you crave and enjoy. The great thing is knowing your cheat day will actually make you leaner which is what I’m putting to the test.
Increased thyroid hormone output. When you are in a caloric deficit, your leptin level isn’t the only thing that lowers, you also produce less T3 and T4 which are both important hormones that helps out with the regulation of your metabolic rate. A few studies have shown an increase of around 9% above baseline, with the possibility of more. This may seem small, but it’s still increase to help with fat loss.
Increased leptin levels. I’ve spoken about leptin levels already. Remember, while you are in a caloric deficit leptin levels drop which causes your metabolism to slow down as well. A little spike in your leptin level from cheat days will help the release of thyroid hormones, increased energy expenditure, and increased thermogenesis.
Aipa Tests a Cheat Day
This has all been a huge experiment with Cheat Days. In the following videos, I’ll take you through my Cheat Day and show exactly what went on during my Cheat Day. There was definitely a big plus side but didn’t end so well.
First let me introduce the day where I started at 830AM for my training for the day. I would highly recommend you plan to train on the day you cheat on in order to take advantage of the surplus of calories you are about to consume that day:
Let the cheat meals begin. I love breakfast, as you will see in the video below. I enjoy the simpler things of breakfast, and that morning I really wanted some pancakes.
Although it started off as a happy day, the ending wasn’t very bright. Pretty much felt like I got kicked in the stomach but hey, whatcha gonna do. And, you may be wondering, Why is he wearing a hat in every video? I’ll tell you why, I’ve been growing my hair out and I have no clue what to do with it. The last time I didn’t have a shave head was 10 years ago, bear with me here.
I will dive deeper into what I think about cheat days. It’ll probably be several weeks of implementing them before I can give a final thought on whether I think it’s worth it or not. But so far it’s looking pretty good according to the picture I took the following morning – it’s the Sutro Filter on instagram to be exact.