Plan Reward Meals That Help With Weight Loss and Fitness
"You're the master of your food choices and can alter your body shape at will while rewarding yourself. That's perfect fat loss control for life."
Every part of your meal preparation plan is essential for helping you to discover the finest version of yourself — and this includes your reward meals. You need to think about it ahead of time. Just like you would with your lunch or dinner main meals.
Some fitness experts like to use the term "cheat meals". But I disagree with that term because it suggests like we're doing something "wrong" when we're eating our favorite foods.
Keep reading to find out what's the most effective way to think about reward meals, and how to plan appropriately for them.
The Purpose of Reward Meals
I like to see reward meals as part of forming a positive food habit. What we're doing is developing a routine of saving controlled indulgence for a specific day in the week. So we're not depriving our bodies of our favorite meals most days. We're actually saving it for after we've done the work we need to do.
"You deserve a reward after the work is done...not before."
By having reward meals as part of your routine, you can:
- Build optimal nutrition habits
- Learn how to reward yourself properly
- Really savor and enjoy your meal
- Have something to look forward to at the end of the week
- Still socialize with family and friends with food
When I was training at an elite level as an international bodybuilding champion, reward meals were a key part of helping me to develop a healthy relationship with food. I felt the difference it made in helping me learn how to enjoy my food with purpose and meaning. And I have continued to adopt the same mentality to this day.
Key Tips for Planning Your Reward Meal
What exactly does a reward meal look like? It can be anything! Your favorite fast food, a small-medium pizza, or eggs benedict. Just remember they essential guidance points:
- Replace ONLY 1 meal or snack for the day with your reward meal
- Consume on Sundays only (as that's usually the day when you're socializing with family and friends. So you don't want to waste a reward meal eating alone)
- Keep portions moderate
- Enjoy yourself!
Now I also want you to take note of how you feel after your reward meal. Because building awareness is essential for helping you understand how your body works.
If you're just starting out with these diet changes, you may suddenly notice feeling more sluggish. Or you may momentarily feel more energetic, but later crash after the glucose spike has died away.
You will start to have a better appreciation of how your "clean eating" during the rest of the week is actually helping your body to function and feel better.
Enjoy Yourself, but Keep Your Eye on the Goal
Rewards are a key part of meal preparation. They give you something to look forward to after a long week of hard work. But they also teach you how to savor your favorite food in a controlled and purposeful manner.
Go out there and enjoy yourself! But also remember that you have a bigger goal to achieve — the finest you. So plan these meals carefully and keep things in moderation. Every decision we make either brings us closer or further from our dreams.