Two Quick Ways to Kick Unhealthy Eating Habits and Get Your Diet Back On Track

Mike kicking a giant cheeseburger with a bang.

Two Quick Tips To Get Your Diet Back on Track

Losing weight can be a frustrating journey as it is but, breaking unhealthy eating habits along the way to create lasting results can make it feel like a near impossible task.

I am right there with you. I have struggled with my weight for the better part of a decade and a big reason for that is my unhealthy relationship with food (overeating, boredom eating, etc.).

There are a couple of strategies that I have found helpful so far that I would like to share with you to help to motivate you to kick some unhealthy eating habits.

NOTE: These habits will not be fixed overnight. It is going to take time (a lot of time), practice, and A LOT of patience with yourself in order to get your body (and mind) healthy and ready to maintain healthy eating habits.

Getting your weight loss back on track can be difficult. The longer you’ve been off the rails, the more difficult it is to get back into those healthy habits you were building. 

I have been yo- yo dieting for a long time, I’m probably a professional. 

So what are these two doable strategies to get you back on track after that picnic where you maybe had one too many hot dogs and all of the sides (hey, you have to treat yourself from time to time!)?

Setting SMART goals and practicing gradual portion control.

DON’T PANIC! YOU GOT THIS!

 

Setting SMART Goals

Let’s start with setting SMART goals. They are are great way to boost your confidence with small, short term incremental goals. These goals will act as checkpoints on your journey to the end goal. 

So what exactly makes a SMART goal… smart?

SMART is just a fun acronym common in the business world that stands for Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, and Time-based.

WHAT!?

Specific: what are you targeting as an area that needs improvement? (i.e. incorporating more exercise or preparing meals)

Measurable: how will you quantify or measure your goal? Or rather, what is going to aid you in tracking your goal and proving the success of it? (i.e. a scale for weight loss or cups for portion control)

Attainable: you must be able to accomplish your goal. Be realistic and steer clear of something like “lose 100 pounds in one month.” That isn’t attainable barring surgery. Lose 5 pounds in two weeks sounds like something you can do!

Relevant: if your main overarching goal is to lose 100 pounds, your goals should lead to that. Using the previous example and expanding on it: “lose 5 pounds every two weeks for 10 months.”

Time-based: create a time frame that you hope to accomplish this goal and stick to it. How long will in realistically take. Like the example above 10 months to one year to lose 100 pounds is a healthy time frame.

Setting SMART goals are a great way to challenge yourself along the way with achievable goals that YOU set yourself. These little wins along the way can help you to stay on track and feel more accomplished throughout your journey. 

SMART goals come in a couple of different styles: Long-term, short-term, and progressive.

Goal examples:

  • Long-term: Lose 40 pounds in 6 months.
  • Short-term: Lose 20 pounds in 2 months then 10 pounds every 2 months until goal is reached.
  • Progressive: Walk for 15 minutes a day and add 5 minutes every week for 3 weeks.

Creating goals that give you a clear time frame and the tools to track them can build up and help you achieve success in a very realistic way.

The best part about SMART goals is you can upgrade your goals over time as well. 

For instance, after you feel a little more confident and comfortable with your diet plan, incorporate something like:

  • Complete 3 cardio and 2 strength exercises over the next 2 weeks.
  • Eat one meal a day consisting of only vegetables for the next month.

On the subject of meals: DO NOT SKIP THEM!

Skipping meals can do more harm than good and it could not only be harmful for you, it can also make it tougher to stay on track with good eating decisions.

Which brings me to my next tip.

PORTION CONTROL 101

I’m sure like me, you’ve heard this before. Just eat less. Easier said than done.

So why is this so important when hopping back into your diet after a little interruption in your diet?

Not only will it help you jump back into whatever your weight loss eating plan is, it will help you to develop valuable skills for the future lean, mean, small portion eating machine you will be!

If you want to fill your plate out more, try to stay away from an extra helping of rice or potatoes. Reach for an extra scoop of that delicious, steamed broccoli instead!

Another method is measuring your food. Not anything drastic (yet) – I mean this is only the beginning of our weight loss journey.

Use measurements to keep general track of what you are consuming, especially when it comes to carbs! Use the serving suggestions on the packaging.

When you make pasta or rice, try using a measuring cup instead of a spoon. This will limit your serving while helping you to visualize different amounts of food so in the future that’s what you go for automatically.

Another common problem (that I personally face) is some not so good old-fashioned overeating. Sometimes, I eat when I am not even hungry but, just because it feels right at the time or I am just plain old bored, I’ll eat.

In the grand scheme of things, it doesn’t matter if you are overeating cookies or cauliflower, consuming such large amounts of food to the point of discomfort is very unhealthy. It is not good for you, your body, or your mind.

Eating just to eat is an unhealthy habit  that can be helped with a LOT of mindfulness and practice – and LOTS of patience with yourself.

Some healthy habits to help with overeating are:

  • Don’t eat straight from the bag of chips, instead, measure out a serving into a separate bowl.
  • Don’t skip meals (I told you!). Eat your three meals a day consistently. Skipping breakfast because you want to save your Weight Watchers points just so you could eat a huge lunch isn’t good. At least eat a banana, they are free on WW!
  • Eat a high protein breakfast. This can help you to reduce your hunger throughout the morning into lunch time. Eggs are always a great high protein breakfast option (and also free on WW).
  • Try to eat slower. This is something I have had to work on (an still do!) as well. Eating so fast that you get that burning lump in your chest. I get it. I know from experience that a heaping bite of something hits different than a little bitty bite will help you slow down your intake and help you to enjoy your food more! Savor your flavor!
  • Drink a tall glass of water before each meal. Not only is water essential to life and straight up refreshing and delicious, it can also help to fill you up faster. Drink a 12 – 16 ounce glass of water before each meal can help to get you full quicker and eat less.

Try implementing SMART goals and working in some portion control methods into your weight loss journey. 

SMART goals and smart eating are a great way to get you back on track when you have that inevitable (but very well deserved) food cheat day.

It is important to remember that on this journey there will be plenty of ups, downs, progresses, and plateaus but, the important thing is that you realize that you are getting to your objective one SMART goal at a time!

You got this!

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top
Verified by MonsterInsights