I'm not going to lie- sometimes I love to eat a TON of food... even when I'm not hungry! Usually this is done while standing in front of the pantry with the door open and spoon in hand. I don't even sit down and relax and eat a legit meal! I'll eat a little chex mix, then move on to semi-sweet chocolate morsels dipped in peanut butter, maybe a few Mike & Ikes, and then I just give up all hope and head to the freezer for ice cream. (Why do I even keep this crap in my house!?) Fifteen minutes after I opened the pantry door, I've consumed almost 800 calories of junk.
Obviously, I don't do this a lot. I used to do it more frequently- when I would starve myself all day and didn't allow myself to eat the things I really wanted. But these days, behavior like this is very rare because I do my darnedest not to set myself up to be in the situation to eat with wild abandon. But on a rare occasion, it has happened.
Immediately after overeating I start wracking my brain for reasons this behavior was okay just this one time.
Below is a list of common excuses for overeating and why they are not valid. Some of the excuses I found online and some I threw in because it's something I actually say to myself.
Excuse #1: I ran a billion miles today and/or I will run a billion miles tomorrow! (Or insert whatever exercise you do.)
Have you ever heard the saying, "You can't out train a bad diet."? Do you know how many miles you have to run or how many minutes on the elliptical it would take to burn 800 calories? (Or however many calories you consumed.)Try it sometime. Get on the treadmill or the elliptical and don't stop until you've burned all of those calories. Now tell me if those 15 minutes in the pantry was worth it!
Excuse #2: It's the weekend!!!!
Your body does not know, nor does it care that it is the weekend. Excess calories turn into fat on Saturdays and Sundays, just like they do on the other five days of the week.
Excuse #3: But it's all healthy food!
Really? You mean you binged on apples, greek yogurt and salad? Not buying it. But let's just say it's true. Of course it would be better to eat an excess of the aforementioned food rather than junk. At least you would benefit from the nutrients. But still, if you consume more calories than you expend, you will gain weight.
4. I rarely ever overeat. It's okay just this one time.
Take a minute and reflect. Is it really "just this one time"? Or was it just one time this week? Honestly, one slip up is not going to ruin your hard work. But it's easy to get into bad habits. Overdoing it once is nothing to freak out about, but take some time to reflect on why you decided to overeat.
So, you have overeaten. What do you do the next day? Here are my tips. (I'm not a doctor, so please don't replace my judgement with your own!)
1. Get over it. It's over. Beating yourself up will not help anything.
2. Try to eat as normal as possible the next day. Don't do anything crazy, like skip breakfast or only eat broccoli.
3. Put that fuel to use! Do some vigorous exercise! This is not a punishment. This is giving your body a gift! Do something you enjoy, just get moving! But be sure don't try to overcompensate for the food, you don't want to end up being tired, stressed, and even more hungry. Just aim for a quality workout- whatever that means for you.
4. Reflect on why you decided to overeat and what you can do next time to not put yourself in that position again!
What do you do to get back on track after you overeat?