First, the good news: I lost two more pounds last week. That puts me at 181, down from 189 when I started. I'm feeling good.
Now to the question at hand: Is there value in a diet skip day?
Let me clarify: By skip day, I don't mean having an anything-goes-all-you-can-eat feeding frenzy. I mean a simple, but mild, relaxing of your diet restrictions. For example, say you normally take in 2,000 calories a day to accommodate your weight-loss plan. One day a week, you allow yourself 2,200 or 2,300 calories, or perhaps more.
There are plenty of diet plans and websites that will say this is OK, even essential for weight-loss success. But they also caution that you have to stay mentally strong to not get back into bad habits. If you're not careful, one skip day turns to two. Before long, you're talking about "skip weeks."
The argument for a skip day is that it keeps your body from adjusting to your new lower caloric intake and gives your metabolism a boost, which keeps weight loss moving forward. It's also supposed to prevent binge eating by allowing you to be a wee bit naughty once a week.
I'm no dietician, but skip days have worked for me. I made good use of them a couple years ago. My skip day was always Sunday. My rule was usually just to eat until I was full. Along the way, if I wanted a second helping of dessert, I had one. If I wanted a mid-afternoon soda, I got one. I just made sure not to go completely overboard. Usually that meant not going over 2,500 for the day (my normal intake at the time was about 2,100). As long as I stayed on track the other six days and kept up with my exercise routine, I continued losing weight.
That said, for some reason, I've been hesitant to embrace the skip day concept during my current exercise regimen. What I've been doing has worked so far, I say to myself, so why mess with a good thing? Maybe I'll experiment this Sunday.
What are your experiences with skip days?