How to Enjoy Your Favorite Meals Without the Guilt

If you’re up on fitness trends, you know about things like macro counting, cheat meals, and flexible dieting. The problem that most people have, especially if they are new to these concepts, is that they just don’t do it right and end up messing up their diet plans, which of course, makes them feel bad. 

But, there are in fact ways to “cheat” while “coloring within the lines.” Ben Hessel demonstrates just how it is possible to stay in line with your macros when you do cheat, so you should be able to enjoy your favorite meals without the guilt. 

Eggs Benedict Corned Beef Hash

Dave’s Deli Benedict Corned Beef Hash set upon two crisp Latkes and topped with two poached eggs, swiss cheese, & hollandaise sauce. Served with homefries $11.79!

How could you pass on THAT for breakfast?

Truth be told, I couldn’t.  I had every last bit of it and if it was at all acceptable I would have licked the damn plate off too.

Now, the first thing I’d like to make clear is that personal trainer’s eat this.

And you eat this too.  Don’t let any rainbow-hair-band-seaweed-eating-weirdo tell you otherwise – personal trainers are human and we love food, too.

Maybe you don’t exactly eat Dave’s Deli Benedict, but you probably go out with friends or family to your favorite breakfast spot from time to time and have some tasty temptation in front of you just DARING you to say yes.


But many of you reading have either tried losing weight in the past year or are working on that right now.  If so, you might have even been told to count your macros.  And when you’re eating something like this beautiful Benedict, it’s just too damn hard to try to figure things out.

Today, I want to show you how to enjoy your favorite meals and not have any guilt while losing weight.

But first, let me say that if you have no idea what macros are or how to count them, start by checking out this supa fine guide to counting your macros (and what they even are).

Anyways, Back to the Benedict.  Looking at the primary ingredients, I know this:

  • Corned Beef Hash has a lot of protein but also a lot of fat
  • Latkes are fried, so that adds fat
  • Two eggs have some fat (learn more about egg yolks here)
  • Swiss cheese, hollandaise sauce and the cottage cheese I replaced the homefries with are home for some fat calories as well

Ya get the point?  There’s a lot of fat.

If you had the exact calories and macronutrient measurements for what you just ate, you could do the easy math and just give yourself a high five.

But in our real world, when we go to a smaller restaurant we usually don’t have that luxury.

Instead, we need to apply logic.  This is what goes through my mind and how I recommend others apply this too:

  • I’m not gonna over-do protein
  • My fat calories are probably already crushed for the day
  • Knowing my macros I’ve probably got a handful of carbs left
  • This wasn’t the most nutritious meal, so I should get some nutrient dense foods in later today

Simply, what this leaves me with the rest of the day is to eat more protein and feast up on some fruits and veggies.

I’m not gonna go starving, I didn’t lose all my “points” for the day and I don’t have to eat any tasteless bland foods.

In fact these are the things I ate after devouring Dave’s Deli Benedict the other day:

  • Lemon Pepper Chicken
  • Beans
  • Green peppers and onions
  • Spinach
  • An apple
  • A chocolate protein shake

Not too bad, eh?  Not your typical “diet,” at least.

One meal won’t crush you, you just have to understand the big picture.

This article has been republished with the permission of Ben Hessel

Ben Hessel graduated from Arizona State University with a Bachelor’s of Science while earning his personal training certification from the National Strength and Conditioning Association (NSCA). In 2011, he began his own personal training business.