If you’ve established yourself a strict, productive routine, it can be hugely beneficial to give yourself some slack now and again.

As you probably know by now, I’m training for the 3 Peaks Challenge in June this year. Since I’m much further behind all the other members of the team, I’ve set myself a rigorous and punishing work, training and dietary schedule to get myself in shape.

Motivation for anything can be hard to maintain, but even more so when you’re limiting and/or being tough on yourself, restricting certain things and enforcing others. That’s why I’ve taken to giving myself a ‘cheat day’ once a week to allow me to indulge, slack off and generally slob around a bit.

Including a cheat day as part of your regular schedule – whether it’s a day off from work, a day with no internet, eating whatever you like or just enjoying something you don’t usually have time for – can be a much stronger motivational tool than a long-term goal; knowing that you’ve got a ‘rest day’ coming up can help you work harder and more efficiently as well as increase your positivity and productivity.

Don’t be so hard on yourself; cheating’s only cheating when it does you a disservice. Sometimes cheating’s just the best way to move forward.

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