These tips will help you stick to your diet and stay on track before you achieve results.

Start­ing a new diet is the easy part; stick­ing to it and see­ing results is much more dif­fi­cult. Here are nine tips to help you make the most of your new diet plan by know­ing what to expect and how to suc­ceed.
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Start small

Start with one or two small goals and aim to stick to them for two to three weeks with the inten­tion of mak­ing them a habit. Then, when you reach those goals, add more. Or if you’re still strug­gling, try a dif­fer­ent goal, try dif­fer­ent habits until some­thing clicks.

The system simplifies everything

One of the best things you can do to achieve your long-term health and fit­ness goals is to build a sys­tem. A sys­tem is a rou­tine built into your dai­ly life that helps you remove obsta­cles and form habits.

Want to learn how to go to the gym every morn­ing? The night before, take your work­out clothes and place them next to your bed. Want to stop eat­ing out every day? Set aside time to pre­pare healthy options each week, or choose a meal deliv­ery ser­vice to do all the hard work for you.

Strive for precision

If you don’t mea­sure it, you can’t con­trol it. Stop guess­ing how much you eat and track with apps. Keep­ing track of your meals every day is the best way to make sure you’re meet­ing your goals. Oth­er­wise, when it comes to your nutri­tion, you go by feel.

Cravings are normal

Once you start lim­it­ing some­thing, human nature begins to crave that very thing. And the more you restrict, the more you crave – espe­cial­ly when it comes to sug­ar crav­ings!

Beyond sheer willpow­er, eat­ing a bal­anced diet is a great way to reduce cer­tain crav­ings. Increase your pro­tein intake, focus on nutri­ent- and fiber-rich fruits and veg­eta­bles, and don’t cut your calo­ries too low.

(Read also: What does an ide­al dai­ly rou­tine for weight loss look like?)

You don’t have to starve

A slight increase in hunger is a nat­ur­al con­se­quence of cut­ting calo­ries, but if you’re con­stant­ly hun­gry, you’re set­ting your­self up for break­down and fail­ure. You don’t have to starve your­self to see results; a grad­ual approach to cut­ting calo­ries is the best approach.

For sus­tain­able weight loss results, it is enough to reduce the calo­rie intake by 15–20%, but if nec­es­sary, you can start with a more con­ser­v­a­tive cut. You can spend a prep week to deter­mine your main­te­nance base­line and get into the habit of track­ing every­thing you eat. Then cut your calo­rie intake by 10% for a few weeks, then by 15% for anoth­er few weeks, and so on. This will help you adjust to low­er intake and cope bet­ter with hunger.

Sleep is essential

If you don’t sleep well or don’t get enough sleep, you can say good­bye to your willpow­er and good inten­tions. Fol­low­ing a diet already requires a cer­tain self-dis­ci­pline. But it’s much hard­er to stick to it and get a good work­out in when you’re con­stant­ly tired. Rest is also impor­tant for mus­cle recov­ery and growth. Make sleep a pri­or­i­ty by choos­ing a bed­time that you can stick to.

Failure is part of the process

Fail­ure is crit­i­cal to your suc­cess. With­out fail­ure, we will nev­er know how to become bet­ter and stronger. Besides, only you decide when you have tru­ly failed. Learn to accept fail­ures as part of the process and change your atti­tude towards them. Instead of look­ing at fail­ures as a rea­son to get off course, see what you can learn from them — maybe your goal was too ambi­tious, maybe you were focus­ing on the wrong things, or you need a lit­tle more bal­ance in your approach. Ana­lyze and con­tin­ue — no one suc­ceed­ed the first time. The more you try, the more like­ly you are to suc­ceed.

Libra can lie

Weight fluc­tu­a­tions are nor­mal and not always under your con­trol. Depend­ing on your macronu­tri­ent intake, exer­cise, stress, sleep, and hor­mones, water reten­tion can cause your body weight to fluc­tu­ate wild­ly. Not to men­tion, if you’re gain­ing mus­cle and los­ing fat at the same time, the scale won’t budge even if your pants fit loos­er. So instead of get­ting upset about the num­ber on the scale, mea­sure your progress in oth­er ways.

Consistency matters most

Real change comes from con­sis­ten­cy, not per­fec­tion. Remem­ber that your health is the result of all the deci­sions you have made in your life, not your last meal. You are what you do repeat­ed­ly, so the more you repeat some­thing, the stronger its influ­ence. This is the essence of con­sis­ten­cy. Try to do the right thing most of the time, not every time, and you will suc­ceed.

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