Treat Cheat Sheet

All the other times I tried to diet in a more healthful way I was tempted by uh… gateway drugs. I mean, gateway foods. In addition, I was always dishonest with myself about what I was really eating. Fad dieting words [“gluten free,” “sugar free,” “non-fat”] on packaged foods helped me justify my consumption of foods that  were not actually calorically or nutritionally sound. Some of the time I even decided that having just a little of this or that, maybe JUST ONE glass of wine wouldn’t really hurt my progress.

The reality was, I wasn’t just having one glass of wine, or a little of this or that. I was having a glass of wine and having a little of this or that everyday.


Let’s look at the human body for a moment. Apart from some standard deviations and the occasional medical condition, our body’s come down to a science.

Sandra put it this way, “Danika I’m going to treat this process as a science project for your body, we need to follow everything exactly to see if that works and we can adjust depending on what results we see.”  Basically it all comes down to testing and measuring. But how can one test and measure if one is inconsistent? That’s like the FDA testing pharmaceutical drugs, giving different daily doses and expecting the results to be consistent.

Being consistent on a nutritional level sounds like a pain huh? It’s really not, it’s quite simple. It’s kind of like taking the correct classes to be able to transfer to a top echelon school. If you want to get in to that tier of school, you simply follow the program, perfectly. You make the decision that’s what you want and you do what you need to make it happen.


Nike says it best, JUST DO IT!

Disclaimer: some people don’t have goals that are defined as mine are. There is more room for deviation depending on your personal situation and goals. Everyone is on their own journey, this is just a blog about my experience.

Let me give you some examples of what to do if you are pursuing a goal in weight loss or fitness in some capacity which will help you with deviations.

The Treat Cheat Sheet:

  1. Pick a day, you can base this on a social gathering or you can make it consistent, like every Saturday evening.
  2. Pick a treat, whether it’s a meal or a dessert or a glass of wine or a beer. It’s important to know what that item is before you sit down and eat it. You don’t want your food to choose you, CHOOSE your food.
  3. Be reasonable. It takes a 3300 calorie deficit to lose 1 pound. That means if you’re creating a 500 calorie deficit daily, you’re due to lose a pound a week. If you treat yourself once a week you may need to be more conscious about picking something that won’t “undo” all your hard work that week.

Good Examples:

  • Filet Mignon and cheese potatoes (instead of chicken and sweet potatoes and some vegetables.) 300-500 calories over and above what you would normally consume for a healthful dinner.
  • One generous glass of wine (or two small ones if it feels like more to you) 125 calories in a 5 ounce serving
  • Non-fat frozen yogurt- maybe 8-10 oz. with some healthful toppings, or none works too. Depending on where you go — 250-500 calories.

Bad Examples:

  • In N Out Animal fries- these are about 900 calories
  • Cream based meals like a creamy soup or macaroni and cheese- these will typically run 1000 calories and upwards, and its hard to measure calorically because there are so many ingredients.
  • Pizza- it’s really not THAT bad in quality of food department, the real issue is its on average for a normal sized slice somewhere around 285 calories. However, who has ONE piece of pizza? I need at least three. Which brings me to my next point….

4. Measure your treat! When one is eating for a goal and to change their body, measurement is key! You should be measuring your healthy food options, so it’s even more essential to measure the treat meal so it doesn’t turn into a ruin-your-week meal.


Here is a little progress update for you all:
As of May 14 I was 26% body fat and 145 pounds. On June 4th Sandra measured me again, now 22% body fat and 140 pounds. What does this mean? It means I lost 7 pounds of fat and gained two pounds of muscle, there’s that RECOMPOSITION BABY!

These results have me FREAKIN out.  I feel like the only other time I’ve seen results remotely similar to these is when I was starving myself. Yet, my coach, Sandra, gave me more calories to eat this week. She says that she wants me eating as much as I can and doing cardio the least number of times possible, how cool is that? Currently, I’m getting my sweat on 3 times a week for 30-45 minutes and lifting 4 times a week. I haven’t yet chosen to have a treat meal since I’m still allowed lots of fun foods at this stage in my prep. I have made some pretty delicious treats with healthful alternatives and would be happy to share some recipes on here if enough people are interested! I’d love to hear from you, please comment or email me at and let me know what you think or for any additional feedback!


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