Survive a Diet Setback: These 4 Habits Will Get You Back on Track

Fell off the weight loss wagon? Here’s how to bounce back.

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It’s Monday morning and you just woke up from a dream filled with ice cream pints, everflowing wine, and handfuls of French fries… except it wasn’t a dream. It was a flashback from your weekend, which is now your present-day weight loss nightmare.

First of all, don’t panic. You’re human! Everyone has slip-ups and it’s OK to indulge. What really counts is how you react and what you do to get back on track. Here’s your guide to help you survive a diet setback.

Plan out your meals. When hunger strikes, nothing derails a diet faster than being surrounded by not-so-good-for-you eats. After an indulgent episode, plan out and prep healthy meals and snacks—full of fiber-rich fruits and veggies—for the next 24 hours (or longer). (Here’s how to organize your fridge for weight loss.) Having nutritious food handy will be your diet armor and help make up for the extra calories. (Going out to eat? These menu hacks can help you lose weight.)

Fit in an extra workout. Whether it’s an extra 30 minutes on the treadmill or walking to do your errands instead of driving, pumping up your physical activity can help negate some of those excess calories. You may regret that extra cookie, but you won’t regret a sweat sesh. (You know the saying: “I wish I didn’t work out”—said no one ever.)

Treat yourself without food. Just as it’s important to keep your body healthy during your weight loss journey, you need to keep your mind healthy as well. Don’t dwell on the damage done; think of what you’ve accomplished so far and all the great things you’re doing for your health. Reset your motivation by buying new workout leggings or sneakers, taking a bubble bath, or buying a new book to curl up with before bed. Here are more non-food ways to curb cravings.

Try something new. Reboot your motivation by spicing up your routine. Convince a friend to take a new class at the gym with you, test-drive a new salad at your usual lunch place, or try one of these unusual weight-loss tips.

What’s your favorite way to get back on track after a weight-loss setback? Take a photo on Instagram or tweet us on Twitter and tag #weightlossreset for chance to be featured!