NUTRITION | Deidre Bloomquist | 2/23/2022
When it comes to setting nutrition goals, having big goals and making big changes is the norm. However, this isn’t typically the most sustainable way to make long-lasting changes to reach your goals.
Most of us feel like we fall into the “all or nothing” category. We set a nutrition goal, go all in for a short period of time where we’re super strict, implement lots of new habits, and often see some quick results, but it doesn’t last long. These 30-day challenges, quick cleanses, and restrictive diets are only easy to follow for so long because they don’t provide us the skills to reach our goals in the long-term.
Here are our top five recommendations that actually work for reaching your goals straight from a nutritionist.
It’s in our nature to have big goals, but it’s easy to get overwhelmed and implement new habits and routines to match these goals that are too much for us to realistically handle at once. Instead, we need to break down a big goal into smaller, easily achievable steps to guide us as we create a new wellness routine. When we start small, we’re able to build the foundation to reach that goal, which means as we get closer we’re less likely to fail. Think of your goals like building a house of cards. The foundation has to be sturdy in order for the high tiers to be supported and reach the height we desire. Without a foundation, the house of cards will easily crumble.
One small change in our wellness routine can create lasting impacts to our health. For example, if you want to lose weight and want to do this by lowering your overall sugar consumption, you can start by making one change in your daily routine, such as skipping a sugary coffee in the morning. Think about how many sugary drinks this is over the course of a week, month, and a year. This alone will drastically make a difference in your sugar consumption over time since everything compounds.
Creating new habits in our health requires that we make new neural connections, which is difficult and requires repetition. One of the easiest ways to create consistency is to tie a new goal to something we already have a neural connection in place for.
For example, if you want to start adding a scoop of collagen peptides to your coffee, connect it to a habit you already have in place such as making the coffee. You could put the collagen in your coffee cup as part of your prep for the coffee machine the night before. You already have the routine of prepping the coffee, so you’re simply adding an additional step to that habit to set yourself up for success.
Out of sight means out of mind. When it comes to reaching your nutrition goals, make things as obvious as possible, whether that means scheduling reminders on your calendar to eat your nutritious meals and snacks or to meal prep or make your goals physically obvious. If you want to start having a protein shake after your workout, leave the protein powder out of the kitchen counter as a physical reminder to make your shake so it’s harder to forget about.
Challenges and obstacles are going to come up. Sometimes we can anticipate things that will be difficult for us, and sometimes we need to create a new strategy as we determine what’s holding us back.
If you already know of an existing obstacle, plan ahead to have a plan in place to easily move past it. For example, if you always crave chocolate after dinner and want to change this routine as part of your larger goals, have a plan for what you’ll do when this comes up rather than pretending it won’t happen. Instead you could have frozen or dried fruit to move you closer to reaching your goal.
It can take 2 months for new habits to become instilled, so focus on consistency and enjoying the process even when things don’t go perfectly. When we utilize a growth mindset, we can assess what’s going well and what we need to continue working on to help us move in the right direction over time and see the long-term effects of our habit changes.
Setting nutrition goals is hardly a walk in the park but implementing these tips can help you take it one step at a time and make progress toward your goals. If you'd like more tips like these to share with your athletes and clients, then sign up for a free affiliate account today to gain access to loads of marketing assets, recipes and more!
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