Thus far, I have written about disciplined eating and taking care of your health. Now I would like to make a departure that may surprise you, and say a word in favor of the occasionally unhealthy meal. In general, what causes weight problems is not the meal you ate last Friday night, but the meals you are eating every day. If you have control over your diet and you are losing weight or have reached your desired weight, having a hamburger with french fries every six months will only be a blip on your overall diet plan. Simply stated: "With discipline comes freedom". We can use this mantra for many things in life, but with dieting and our desire for eating, it means an infrequent splurge is okay.

For example, this past June, I had the pleasure of eating the best hamburger of my life. It tasted very good and it came from Five Napkin Burger, an aptly named establishment on Manhattan's West Side. This burger oozed with taste. I did not ask for the cheese to be put on one side, the meat on the other side and the empty, special low-calory bun in the middle. This was a burger with all the things normally associated with a hamburger: cheese, onions, french fries etc. I even started with a lemonade and finished with a cold beer. In the end, I left nothing on the plate.

Knowing this meal would be filling, I walked the 15 NYC blocks to the restaurant and at least that many back to the hotel. It was all part of my plan for a guilt-free, glutenous evening of taste bud satisfaction. I do not have weight problems and I do not want to develop them. That's why I walked to and from the meal - my way of allowing myself to have such a meal. I also ate my normal breakfast and just a snack for lunch. I had heard so much about this restaurant. Fortunately, I was not disappointed.

Comfort foods are necessary for our mental health. They make us feel good and take away the stresses of life. Unfortunately, most of those foods do not sit atop any weight loss plan. If you want to lose weight, start your diet today and stick with the plan created by your nutritionist or doctor. Do not splurge or deviate from the plan. Then set yourself up for an early evening gustatory delight. If possible walk to your meal and back home. Cut back on your lunch and be sure to exercise, then enjoy a guilt-free evening. This will only work if you have the discipline and plan to keep you on track and honest with yourself and nutritionist for the next 6 months. On a human note, having patience, working and waiting for something ads to the pleasure and success of the experience.

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The Champion's Way

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