The four questions to ask yourself before you start a diet

December is a time for family, for friends, and for food. After all, they go really good together – usually too good over the holidays. Am I right?

I thought so. And that’s probably why many of you are already thinking about ways to shed the winter weight come January (if not next week).  I’ll level with you – I don’t love a diet. I find most are unsustainable and that eating real food – like the type your great grandma used to eat – is the best way to drop extra lbs.

That being said, I know diets can be a great way to kick start lifestyle changes and a helpful avenue when looking to try new things. They teach you new recipes, show you what will and won’t work for your life, and they provide structure for those who need it. I definitely see the benefits of diets and get why people do them. I just think we need to see them for what they are: lifestyle activators.

So, if you’re approaching a diet like that, I’m into that and want to help you make the most of it. That’s why I am sharing the four questions you should ask yourself before starting any diet. These questions will help you prepare for the diet and prep you to parlay lessons learned into your everyday life.

The four questions to ask yourself before you start a diet

1.     Do I want to do this diet?

2.     What kind of results do I expect from this diet?

3.     What changes do I have to make to my day to execute this diet out? 

4.     How long do I want to do this diet?

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Do I want to do this diet? I  know. It seems like a silly question. But you have to ask yourself this question and be serious about your answer. Because if you don’t want to do the diet and start it anyways, you’re going to fail. And that’s no good for anyone. So, be honest when you ask yourself, do you really want to give this diet a go. If the answer is “no”, you’ll have to find another way to kick start your health. And that’s okay.

What kind of results do I expect from this diet? Weight loss can’t be the only goal of a diet. It can’t be because it’s the least helpful motivator when changing routine. You have to get at the root cause of why you want to make a lifestyle change. So, dig deeper and figure out why you want to drop the pounds. Do you want more energy? Are looking to gain control?  Do you want to feel better inside and out? Get clear so you can figure out if this diet will get you where you want to.

What changes do I have to make to my day to execute this diet out? Do you have to get up earlier? Do you have to food prep on Sundays? Do you need crave out 30 minutes at work to eat lunch? Figure out what changes you have to make to your day-to-day to and determine if you’re willing and able to adjust your schedule accordingly. If your motivator is strong enough, you’ll be more likely to do so. If it’s not, you know what will happen. So, be honest with yourself about whether the diet you're considering can fit into your life and, if it can’t, adjust course.

How long do I want to do this diet? Like I said at the beginning of this blog, most diets aren’t sustainable. After all, your body needs different things at different times in your life. Your schedule is bound to change. And sometimes a diet that you thought you like gets boring. So, take a minute and decide how long you want to try this diet out. Think of it like a test run. This will alleviate the pressure that often comes along with diets, and it will give you a built-in slot in your calendar to evaluate whether or not you got the results you wanted and if it’s worth continuing.

Are you planning to try a diet soon? If so, tell me which one and your game plan for it in the comments below!

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