What's the difference?! Well, lets just talk about mind set for minute!
When we were younger and considered cheating on a test, did we think of it as something we enjoy? How about deserve? How about is needed? Probably not! Labeling and just thinking of your refeed day as cheating is already setting yourself up for a negative mindset and feelings of doing something wrong.
I know that I have tried almost every kind of nutritional plan out there...and almost all of them resulted in me having 'cheat meals' or days which always left me feeling so guilty or discouraged. Even when it was programmed into the plan. I could never just have one cheat meal and feel ok about it because I was so terrified I was cheating and simply doing something wrong. This is the exact reason why so many nutritional plans also didn't work for me. I would literally become so stressed out about what I was or wasn't eating. I would get frustrated when I couldn't enjoy my favorite restaurant or celebrate with friends and family and realistically, down right crabby! Then, I would give up.
It wasn't until just recently that I discovered that when we are restricting our diets for weight loss, performance, maybe just overall health...that we physically need to replace certain things back into our diet. Without getting all scientific on ya, to basically increase our levels of certain nutrients that play such an important role in the conducting's of our bodies. Think of it as a re-set. Our bodies probably don't need that huge plate of delicious pasta with white sauce, hearty craft brew or giant bowl of ice cream, but! Enjoy that, and move on! It'll be ok!
Point is, when we're being mindful of what goes in our mouths, we also have to remember to not be so incredibly hard on ourselves. This world and amazing people in it have created some utterly delicious foods and drinks that likely aren't always that great for us nutritionally. That does not mean we can not have them ever! It means maybe sparingly, which gives us the opportunity to really enjoy them. So don't crush that thinking that you're cheating. Take your refeed day....fuel your body. Make smart decisions and watch portions so you're not going completely overboard, but relax guys. Don't make it harder on yourself!
Who's ready for a good refeed day?!