Did you know that over 90% of diets fail? Why is that? Is it because we lack the commitment necessary to follow through? Or is it because we choose the wrong diet for our lifestyle? Whatever the reason, the 10 tips in this list will help make sure your next diet isn’t just another statistic in this long list of dieting failures.
1. Avoid trendy diets—From the magazines lining the checkout counters at grocery stores to the afternoon talk shows, trendy diets are everywhere. Every week, there is a new “miracle diet” that produces results that are just too good to be true. And guess what? They are too good to be true. Trendy diets almost never work as they typically encourage shortcuts or dangerous eating practices.
2. Pick a diet that fits your lifestyle—The key to being successful with your diet is finding a plan that fits your lifestyle. For example, if you work 2 jobs and live in an apartment with a cramped kitchen, a diet that requires a ton of cooking probably won’t suit your lifestyle. As a result, you’ll end up breaking it because you don’t have the time or resources to cook properly. There really are diet plans available for every lifestyle, so find one that matches your way of life.
3. Prepare diet-friendly meals ahead of time—If the diet you choose involves cooking your own meals, take some free time to prepare meals ahead of time. Eventually, you’ll run into one of those evenings after a long day of work where you just don’t feel like cooking. If your meal is already prepared, you can avoid breaking your diet.
4. Set goals—You have to set goals for your diet or else you’ll have no direction. The key is to set goals that are realistic. As nice as it’d be to drop 50 pounds in a month, that’s probably not going to happen. If you set unrealistic goals, you’ll lose confidence when you don’t achieve them, causing you to break your diet. Contrarily, if your goals are tough but realistic, your confidence will go through the roof, further motivating you to stick to your diet.
5. Monitor your progress daily—A common reason we break our diets is because we don’t hold ourselves accountable. Come up with a system for tracking your progress daily. Put a chart up on the wall listing what you ate for the day. Accountability is what will keep you motivated and focused.
6. Avoid tempting situations—If you know that meeting your friends down at the sports bar will cause you to binge on wings, avoid doing so. Suggest meeting somewhere else or skip out on hanging out that night.
7. Don’t starve yourself—Trying to lose weight by starving yourself is one of the worst things you can do. Not only will it make you miserable and unhealthy, but it’s also a scientifically flawed approach. Your body needs to intake calories so that it can burn fat when you exercise.
8. Reward yourself occasionally (and in moderation)—Whenever you reach the mini-goals you set for yourself, reward yourself…in moderation. If you enjoy ice cream, enjoy a small sized serving of your favorite flavor. Or, you can reward yourself in another way—a shopping spree, a day at the spa, tickets to a sporting event, etc.
9. Ditch the unhealthy snacks—Snacks are a diet’s worst enemy. If your cupboards are full of unhealthy chips and other snacks, ditch them. Because a time will come where you’re looking for something to munch on, and if unhealthy options are around, you could easily break your diet. Instead, have healthy snacks on hand (fruits, vegetables, etc.). Also, avoid the snack machine at work by bringing healthy snacks with you.
10. Live a healthy lifestyle along with your diet—Dieting alone usually isn’t enough. You should also start exercising regularly and living an all-around healthy lifestyle. This means trying to break bad habits like smoking that deteriorate your health.
Have you had success dieting? What worked for you?