Sticking to your healthy eating habits is not always an easy feat (we know that) especially when cheeseburger loaded pizzas and fried ice cream sandwiches exist in this world. But making the effort to adhere to a healthy routine is worthwhile in helping us to achieve our goals, and most importantly providing us with the energy our bodies need to live our best lives and hit those PB’s.
So whether you’re shredding for a hot girl summer or you’re just trying to cut out some of those cheeky post-workout doughnuts, we’re here to help you stick to your eating routine with these 8 helpful tips.
01. MEAL PREP & MAKE HEALTHY FOOD CONVENIENT
It’s easy to go for the unhealthy fast option when it comes to food because convenience often trumps time spent cooking and then cleaning up that giant mess you just made. So why not dedicate an hour on a Sunday afternoon cooking bulk meals for the week ahead, minimising the amount of time and dishes you would make during the week. Meal prepping is also an excellent way to track what portions and ingredients you’re fueling yourself with, as well as using up all those scraps left in the fridge, eliminating food wastage. Try and be creative when it comes to your meals of choice, as the downside to meal prepping can be that you’re eating the same lunch for the rest of the week. Remember, there are always healthy alternatives so cook something you enjoy eating. Also, be sure to have enough storage containers. Click here for your ultimate meal prep guide.
02. SET REALISTIC GOALS - SLOW & STEADY WINS THE RACE
We have all heard of the crash diets that only consist of a detoxing tea or celery juice that sees you dropping the pounds in no time, but as soon as you return to your normal eating you realise all that celery was for nothing. Whether your goal is to lose weight, gain weight (bulking season bro) or anything in between, is to do it slowly and gradually. By taking this gradual approach, you won’t be overwhelmed and are less likely to fall off the bandwagon.
Setting unrealistic goals can also be disheartening when you aren’t seeing your desired results so be kind to yourself and realise that change takes time.
03. EDUCATE YOURSELF
This depends entirely on your goals. Whether you just want to eat healthier to feel better, have more energy, or lose weight, you’ll need to know what foods to add, subtract, or limit, considering the energy you are expending throughout the day. The last thing you want to be doing is undereating and lacking the energy to concentrate on work, levelling up your training or whatever your day throws at you. It’s important to either do some research on your change of eating habits or consult a professional so that you are hitting your adequate calories, micros and macros to achieve your goals and live your best life. Not quite sure what macros and micros are? Have a quick read here.
04. DON’T RESTRICT YOURSELF FROM EVERYTHING - YOU’RE ALLOWED TO TREAT YOURSELF
The more you restrict yourself, the more likely you will blow out and binge eat your way through the fridge. Having a treat is very normal and should be a part of your new healthy eating routine; you’re allowed to enjoy the things you love. Just remember, it’s all about moderation. It’s also said that having a cheat meal can also be a strategic move to help a fat loss plan (if this is your goal). When you reduce calories, your hormone leptin (key for regulating your body’s energy balance) is affected. Over time, it works slowly, making it more difficult for you to lose body fat. However, if you plan for a ‘cheat’ meal, it temporarily boosts your leptin and resets your hormone levels, encouraging the body “to continue giving up fat stores for fuel, so your weight loss doesn’t plateau.”
05. HEALTHY FOOD DOESN’T HAVE TO TASTE BAD - GET CREATIVE
Variety is key if you’re someone who gets bored easily with the same tuna and rice meal every day. If you have the variety, you are less likely to fall into bad eating habits that will leave you again at square one. As well as this, just because you are actively choosing a healthier lifestyle doesn’t mean it has to be bland and lacking in flavour and spice. Need some help coming up with some tasty, nutritious meals? No probs, click here.
06. KEEP HEALTHY FOOD/ SNACKS IN THE HOUSE IF YOU DON’T TRUST YOURSELF
We all know how tricky it can be when you have been on a roll with your eating and drinking, and then you spot the crisps or your favourite chocolate on the top shelf of your pantry, and it’s game over. If you don’t quite have the willpower to shut that pantry door and reach for something a little more nutritious, then perhaps it’s best to get rid of the constant temptation altogether. Healthy eating is made way easier when you’re surrounded by a healthy environment full of healthy foods. This is not to say you can’t have treats, but when the chocolate becomes a regular 3pm pick-me-up to get you through the afternoon, then it’s best to re-evaluate your habits. Try reaching for fruits, veggies, nuts or dark chocolate when you get the munchies. Perhaps try these high protein lifting snacks.
07. DRINK PLENTY OF WATER
Get bored and start to think you’re hungry even though you just ate lunch? Try drinking some water and assess how you feel after. Often we can mistake dehydration for hunger as the symptoms can be pretty similar, including headache, fatigue, lightheadedness and difficulty concentrating. Try and make sure you’re hitting your water goal of around 3 litres per day.
If you get sick of drinking plain old boring water, spice it up with some lemon, cucumber mint or even some berries. Or try a relaxing, calming herbal tea to get those fluids up.
08. SWEET TOOTH? MAKE SUBSTITUTES
Getting sweet cravings can always be a challenge when it comes to keeping on track with your healthy eating. If fresh fruit just doesn’t quite hit right for your sweet tooth, then perhaps go for the dried option such as apricots, sultanas, prunes and dates - just be aware of your portions as these bad boys are more calorie-dense than fresh fruit. Or why not try ‘nice cream’ an alternative to ice cream using bananas to give you that frozen sweet combo. Perhaps a chocolate coconut protein ball is more up your alley when it comes to sweets containing the perfect amount of protein, carbs and fats to fuel you pre or post-workout. Check out our recipe here.
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