Health and Fitness

Health Coach, CPT & FNS 

Health Coach, B.S. Dietetics

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How to be Successful with Your Dieting Goals

When it comes to any diet or lifestyle change, knowing your why is going to be a huge factor in determining your success. Why are you making this goal for yourself? What do you want to achieve? What happens after your goal is achieved? Knowing these things ahead of time will aid in your success and ability to follow through afterwards. 

Many are looking to change their diet, not just for weight loss, but also for many other reasons that may relate to their overall health and even mental health. Sometimes, we are looking for both feeling and looking better. Often, our goals can be more than one thing.  

Most people with dieting goals are interested in:

  1. Weight loss
  2. Lean bulking
  3. General weight gain
  4. Healing hypothalamic amenorrhea
  5. Pregnancy
  6. Fertility
  7. Overall health
  8. Wanting to feel better in clothes
  9. Breastfeeding
  10. Quitting their sugar addiction
  11. Managing or reversing a disease
  12. Disease prevention
  13. Mental health (anxiety, depression, etc.)

Once you have identified your why or even “why’s”, the best approach may be to pick one goal for yourself, reach that goal, and then make another for yourself. Most people feel overwhelmed and fail when they put too much on their plate at one time. Some examples might be, you have identified your why to be recover from your anxiety, quit your sugar addition, lose weight, all while reversing autoimmune disease. This can seem overwhelming at first! Baby steps are key to success and developing new long term habits. Start with one change such as, I am going to make an effort to walk 10,000 steps per day. This one change can help with all of these goals. Say to yourself, I am going to do this everyday for 30 days. Next, hold yourself accountable. Do you need a spouse or friend to remind or motivate you? Is there a consequence if you do not follow through? Remind yourself how you felt after you got your steps in. Remind yourself of your why, whether that means journaling or even telling others your why. If you do fall off the horse, put it in the past and move forward. You cannot change the past, but every day is a new opportunity to succeed.

When your goal is achieved, try to continue to incorporate this new healthy habit in your routine, but either build upon it, or set another goal for yourself. Most people, don’t make sustainable changes over night, and at the end of the day no one wants to go back to old habits that were making them miserable in the first place. With this said, it’s also important to look back on the changes you made and think, how did I feel during that time? Can I sustain this? If you cannot sustain your new habit, consider something new that you can sustain and will also lead to a more positive outcome. Maybe yoga wasn’t motivating you to workout. Try a new workout that you feel excited about and can sustain. On the other hand, maybe giving up night snacking on the weekend was easy, so now try the whole week.

When making goals for yourself, be realistic about what you can maintain, but also don’t fear a challenge. You may be surprised with how much or how far you are willing to go to reach your goals. If you never try, you won’t know. Give yourself a reasonable time frame to incorporate new habits and diet changes. Hold yourself, or have others hold you accountable. And first and foremost, remember your why and how that is important to your success.

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