If you’re focusing on losing weight or other health goals, you’ve probably heard that dropping pounds is 80% due to diet and 20% due to exercise. The bottom line: diet is your most important tool when it comes to weight loss. But even the most focused, disciplined person falls off the meal plan wagon from time to time.
If you find yourself having eaten off-plan or deviating from your intended diet, it’s important not to be too hard on yourself. Occasional slip-ups are normal and shouldn’t derail your overall progress. Here’s what you can do after you’ve eaten off plan:
Don’t Beat Yourself Up: Negative self-talk and guilt won’t help you get back on track. Instead, acknowledge the slip-up and avoid being overly critical of yourself. Remember that one meal or snack doesn’t define your entire journey.
Stay Hydrated: Drink plenty of water to help flush out excess sodium and aid digestion. Drinking plenty of water can also help curb any reawakened craving patterns and bad eating habits to get you back on the path.
Avoid Restriction: In spite of what is popular, don’t fall into the trap of restricting food too much afterward. This can lead to an unhealthy cycle of binging followed by excessive restricting. Instead, get back to your regular balanced eating routine.
Mindful Eating: Approach your next meal mindfully. Pay attention to your hunger and fullness cues, eat slowly and savor each bite, and choose nutrient-dense foods that make you feel good.
Move On Quickly: Have you ever thought, “What the heck – I’ll just make it a whole cheat day.” Resist this temptation! Don’t let one slip-up turn into days or weeks of unhealthy eating. Accept it as a small setback and refocus on your goals immediately.
Plan Ahead: If you know you’ll be in situations where it’s challenging to stick to your plan: prepare, prepare, prepare! Have healthy snacks on hand or eat a nutritious meal before going out.
Reflect: Take some time to consider what led to the deviation. Was it an emotional trigger, a social situation, or something else? This can help you identify patterns and develop strategies to handle similar situations better in the future.
Positive Reinforcement: Focus on your achievements and how far you’ve come rather than dwelling on the slip-up. Positive reinforcement is a much better motivator, helping you to stay on track for the long haul.
Practice Self-Compassion: Hey, you’re a human, not a robot! Treat yourself with kindness and understanding. Remember that nobody is perfect and setbacks are a part of any journey.
Recommit to Your Goals: Remind yourself why you started your health and fitness journey in the first place. Use the slip-up as a reminder of your commitment to positive changes.
Exercise: Don’t let one less-than-perfect meal (or set of meals) get you down. Get back out there and get moving! Physical activity can help boost your mood, reduce stress, and create a positive mindset – getting you back to feeling like yourself ASAP!
Seek Support: If you find it challenging to get back on track, consider for support from a friend, family member, or a support group. Sharing your challenges and successes with others can provide motivation and accountability.
Remember that a single off-plan meal won’t significantly impact your overall progress if you consistently make healthy choices over the bigger picture. The key is to maintain a balanced and sustainable approach to your diet and lifestyle.
Let Us Help You Embrace the Journey
At Baer-Fit, our certified trainers work closely with you to understand your unique fitness goals and design customized workout and meal plans to get you there. Not only do we provide you with the roadmap to get you where you want to go, but we are with you each step of the way, holding you accountable and celebrating all the milestones.
To learn more, visit our Contact page and send us a message! We can’t wait to learn more about you.
*You are unique and so is your body! Before starting any new health routine, always be sure to talk with your doctor to make sure it is right for your needs.