There is so much information out there for every diet you can possibly imagine. I think I have tried them all. I once ate cabbage soup for 2 weeks straight. I lost weight but I was a bit stinky for awhile!
I'm going to tell you a tricky little secret right now. All these crazy diets work ... IF YOU STICK TO IT!! They are made to give you a calorie deficit and keep your fat and carbs low. Even with the high fat diets their true intention is to fill you up so you don't eat as much giving you that calorie deficit that you need to shed the pounds.
The key phrase in that last statement is "IF YOU STICK TO IT". The hard part about dieting is finding one that you can maintain for the rest of your life.
Here are some tips to help you STICK TO IT:
1. Variety ~ Never start any diet that makes you eat the same thing every week. Make sure that you are always changing it up. Boredom is the #1 cause of all diet failure. Try new foods weekly. Look for new FUN recipes and keep it exciting.
2. Never say never ~ Do not eliminate any food group that you like. Moderation is the key. Elimination leads to failure. Eat what you like, If you like sweets eat sweets. Just count it into your macros and you will be fine.
This is my favorite. 225 Calories ~ Low fat icecream and some of my favorite fruits. All measured out and logged. Vitamins and sweet tooth covered ... all in one bowl!
3. Get those nutrients in! I know it's all about a caloric deficit but something has to keep your brain motivated, happy and healthy to be able to stick to it. If you're always sick, can you work out? No. If you're in a bad mood because your body is lacking the proper nutrition will you be motivated to eat right? No. So get those fruit and veggies in everyday!
4. EAT! Do not starve yourself. Will starving yourself work? Absolutely. Will it work forever? Not a chance. Your body gets used to whatever you do. If you set your body to eat 1000 calories a day eventually it will get used to that and you will stop losing weight. You will then have to eat less and less to lose.
5. Spice it up! Try out new spices. Go to the spice aisle in the grocery store every week. Get something new everytime. Spice up that grilled chicken! Spice up that steak! Spice up those veggies! Spice up your life!
6. Water ~ This is by far one of the most important tips. Drink 1 gallon of water everyday. The easiest way to do it is to drink 1 cup per hour. Get a 1 gallon jug and mark off each hour. It will help with bloat, mood (seriously it does!) and dry skin. Here is my jug ...
7. Accountability ~ There are so many groups on social media on just about any topic you like. Join some and meet some like minded people. Contribute and tell them your goals and encourage them to work towards theirs. Sometimes pushing others helps you feel stronger and pushes you towards your goals as well.
8. Stay off that scale ~ Take pictures, measure and get your BMI checked. I have to admit, I love before and after pictures. You SEE a total transformation and its beautiful. Yes, the scale will show you numbers but a picture is worth 1000 words. Non scale victories are the best!
9. Add weights to your workout ~ I love the saying " Heavy weights don't make you fat, cupcakes do"! This is true. Lift heavy and train hard. There is much more to body building than lifting heavy weights. So don't worry, you won't be busting out of your shirts by adding 10 more pounds to your routine. Muscle helps burn fat. I promise!
10. HAVE FUN! Staying consistent doesn't mean you have to do the same thing everyday. It means you have to practice the same concept everyday. So maybe one day you go to the gym and lift heavy things and the next day is a long bike ride in the sunshine. One day is a rainbow salad ( a salad where the goal is to find a veggie of every color of the rainbow in it) and the next is a homemade turkey burger made with southwest spices and some bacon mustard from the grill!
There is an old saying that is probably over used but it is so true...make healthy living a lifestyle and please, live by tip #10 ... HAVE FUN WITH IT!
*Photos by Stephanie Stevens
Stephanie has been a P90XLive and PIYOLive Instructor for 4 years and is currently working on her Fitness Nutrition Specialist Certification. Everything that she writes about comes with first-hand knowledge as she was once 40 pounds heavier. Instead of fad diets and weight-loss quick gimmicks, Stephanie stayed consistent with a healthy diet and constant exercise. She educated herself by getting certified in many different areas of exercise and learning how to first be healthy and then lose weight. Now, she is helping others do the same!