Have you ever started a new diet, completely excited that this time you’re going to lose all of your excess weight, only to realize within a week or two that it didn’t exactly fit your lifestyle? Maybe it included meals that took too long to prep and you don’t like spending a lot of time in the kitchen. Or perhaps it involved eating foods you aren’t crazy about.   While it may be tempting to give up and resign yourself to a body that isn’t as in shape as you’d like, there is another alternative: creating your own personalized diet. I’m talking about one that fits your life and feels as good as an individually tailored pair of designer jeans. But how do you do that?

1. Identify What Doesn’t Work

To create a diet that does work, you need to first realize what doesn’t because these are the factors that can stop you from reaching your goals. Thinking back to other diet programs you’ve tried, what did you dislike about them, ultimately making you give them up? For instance, did they involve eating too little or too much? Did they cut out too many foods or food groups? What about them turned you off?

2. Consider Your Ideal Diet Plan

Now that you know what you don’t want, it’s time to figure out what you do. This means considering what your ideal diet plan would look like (keeping in mind that it has to be reasonable; you can’t just eat junk food and expect to lose weight). Jot this down on a piece of paper. Be sure to include all factors that your specific plan would need to have in order to adhere to it. Would it be rigid or flexible? How would it motivate you to continue? What types of foods would it contain?

3. Learn Your Dietary Requirements

Before you can create your ideal plan, you need to know how many calories you need based on your sex, age, weight, height, and daily activity level. There are manyonline daily needs calculators that enable you to plug this type of information in and get your requirements in a click of the mouse.

4. Create a Plan You Feel Would Work

It’s time to start creating the best program for you, giving you a rough framework to follow. Plan out how often you will eat, what each meal looks like, and the average number of calories per meal or snack. Keep in mind that some days may be different from others, so factor this in as well. Also, while it may be tempting to make it all nutrition and no food favorites, this will likely lead to feeling deprived, forcing you to abandon your diet all together. So be sure to include some “treats”as well.

5. Try Out Your Plan

This is the exciting step because this is where all of your hard work is finally put into action. Try out your plan and see how it feels. Commit to it for at least seven days, keeping notes on what is working and what isn’t.

6. Make Any Necessary Changes

At the end of the week, take a look back and make any changes necessary to your diet to get it to fit into your lifestyle. While some level of discomfort is expected, as when making any type of change, the more your program fits your life, the more likely you are to follow it. And the more likely you are to lose the weight… and keep it off for good!

– Written by: Shelly Stinson –

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