Welp, it’s that time again, my friends. Summer is upon us, and with weeklong vacations and sunny, bikini weather comes the dreaded four-letter word: diet.
Girls seem to be more body-conscious now than ever before. Instead of trying to achieve a healthy and happy lifestyle, girls are now more focused on getting a skinny stomach, the nearly impossible thigh gap or figuring out which way to pose in pictures to look their best. Hitting the gym is the number one way to achieve those typical beach bod goals, but workouts do nothing without the correct diet.
Before I get to my incredibly simple ways to stick to this non-existent diet, I should start with a warning. When I use the word ‘diet’, I do not, I repeat, DO NOT mean eating a certain number of calories or cutting major food groups. The word is used to mean eating habits.
News flash: crash diets don’t work. The second you reward yourself with that one (or three) slices of pizza, you’ll loose all the ‘progress’ you’ve seen and feel like crap. Trust me, it’s not worth it to ruin your metabolism and drive yourself crazy for that few days of feeling skinny.
Now these tips won’t get you a bikini-body in 10 days or lose three dress sizes in a week, but they will help to live a more healthy and happy life that your body will thank you for. No crash diet will make you feel as good as living a healthy life.
The first way to stick to that non-existent diet is to eat, eat, eat! Many girls think cutting calories is the foolproof way to losing weight, but this is a myth. Researchers, such as the author of The 3-Hour Diet and The Beauty Detox, have learned that eating more, smaller meals filled with clean eats are the best way to maintain a faster metabolism as well as get all the required food groups in each day. Fill gaps between meals with raw nuts and veggies, and leave your heaviest meals for later in the day to get the most energy and easiest digestion.
Next, try substitutions to keep your favorites while still opting for the healthy choice. This simple trick can lead to not only weight lose but more energy and a faster metabolism. Easy substitutions such as coconut oil instead of butter and avocado instead of mayonnaise is simple, and before you know it you’ll be loving the taste of the substitution of healthy fats than you did with you did before. Healthy fats such as almond butter, coconut oil and avocado are delicious ways to get those much-needed fats into your diet while still sticking to a clean eating diet.
Substitutions can liven up your ordinary meals. Try squeezing a fresh lemon on your salad instead of that heavy hand of ranch or making your own fresh salsa instead of the one packed with preservatives. Not only will you feel great but your bank account will thank you as well. Paying for convenience over health benefits will eventually drain your body as well as your bank account.
The last way to stick to a healthier diet is to invest in a water bottle. Bedazzle it, color it, get the trendy Camelbak as your new favorite accessory; whatever you have to do to get more water into your body every day, do it! The easiest way to drink more water is to already have some on you when you get thirsty. Drinking more water leads to fewer headaches, cramps and toxins in the body while also promoting weight loss and improving skin complexion. As one of the only things that you can put in your body that has zero negative health benefits, it’s the clear choice to a healthy life.
Spice up your water by adding lemon, lime or cucumbers to get a boost of flavor the healthy way. You can also add herbs like mint, rosemary or sage for a little extra spice.
Whoever said, “Nothing tastes as good as skinny feels” was a liar. Those of us that realize that a diet doesn’t have to be a negative, strict guideline of what not to eat will be on our way to a happier, healthier lifestyle without the regretting what we eat or cutting out what we love.
Feature image via flickr