When it comes to weight loss or intensive exercise routines, there’s nothing quite like that first bite of your favorite greasy food after a long week of vegetables and lean meats.

This amount of leeway can work wonders for getting into shape. But while the cheat meal is great for keeping your goals in sight, you can easily throw yourself off track when you’re not careful.

Here’s how you can get the best cheat meal you can while still on your way to being healthy:

  1. Plan it well

What makes a cheat meal work is the fact that it’s planned between rigorous workouts and dieting regimens – not only does it trick your body into continuing to burn weight, but it also motivates you to keep going.

Ideally, they should be in line with other people’s schedules when they’re not busy for lunch or dinner, as cheat meals feel even more rewarding when you factor in the social aspect of food.

  • Don’t go on a cheat meal when you’re starving

Don’t starve yourself of your weekly caloric intake just to get to your cheat day – doing so only makes it so that you’ll throw your whole regimen off course, since it’s harder for you to control yourself when you haven’t eaten properly for a while.

What you do need to go along with your cheat day would be the following:

  • It limits your body’s insulin response. The higher the insulin response, the more sugar in your body is converted to fat.
  • Opening your muscles. Contracting muscles requires energy, which helps to burn the extra that you gained on your cheat meal.
  • Emptying your stomach quickly. Limiting your digestion time gets the junk out as quickly as possible while ensuring that the least amount of fat goes into your body.
  • Add caffeine and cinnamon with your cheat meals

Cinnamon is known to lower the body’s insulin response, which means less sugar in your body is converted into fat. It also takes longer to digest and makes you feel fuller for a longer period of time.

Caffeine in your cheat meals is also great since it works as a laxative, helping food pass through your digestive system more easily.

  • Get a few rounds of exercise in

While it’s great that you get these extra calories in your system, you also need to spend the extra time to burn them off. Doing 90 seconds of bodyweight exercises ninety minutes after your cheat meal is a great way to do this.

Some great exercises for this include air squats, wall presses, or even chest pulls, as these are the ones most likely to divert the calories into your muscles instead of being stored as fat.