If you're like me, maintaining a healthy diet is quite hard. Not because of the food, that's actually quite nice, but because of the motivation. I'm a very lazy person and I lose motivation quite quickly. But I've come up with a few ways of keeping myself motivated and keeping up with being healthy.

Firstly, I get rid of all the junk food in my house. A healthy diet does have sugar and fat and believe me when I tell you, I give into my cravings plenty. But, if there are no chocolate bars, no cakes, no junk food in your house, the temptation to break out of your healthy lifestyle is reduced a lot. 

Secondly, I replace all my sweet snacks with fruit and other healthy alternatives. I recently discovered my love of dried mango. It's sweet, it has a texture that's similar to sweets and it certainly fulfils my sweet cravings when I get them. Be careful about the dried fruit you do buy - Bear Nibbles are my favourite and they are preservative-free but many dried fruits have preservatives in them. If you do crave something like chocolate, opt for dark chocolate - it's often lower in calories because it has less dairy and more cocoa.

Thirdly, I give in to cravings. Cravings aren't always about addiction to sugar or wanting junk food. I started the gym with less protein in my diet than I needed. After one session I realised I craved a lot of meat and I realised that was because of my lack of protein. My muscles weren't recovering from the workouts as quickly as they should and with my craving for meat, I looked at my diet and realised I needed more protein for my lifestyle. Take a look at your cravings and really consider why you're craving them. If you're lacking something in your diet that your body needs, your body will tell you. You just need to know the difference between craving for nutrition or craving because you like it.

That's not to say giving in to that chocolate bar every once in a while is a bad thing. No diet (and I use diet to say how a person eats, not diets to lose weight) can exist when a person cuts out food groups or food that they love completely, with the exemption of dietary needs. What I mean by that is that people will crave food they love. I know I crave cakes all the time. But eating one cake now is better than eating two cakes down the line. A cheeky cake here and there won't do any damage, just account for it by exercising a bit more. Or give yourself a day where you can just relax and eat what you want. Just try not to binge, I don't think I need to explain how that's counterproductive. 

So those are my tips on how to stay motivated and stay healthy. I didn't want to talk about diets aimed at losing weight because most aren't very good for you. The best diet is a healthy and balanced one.

Published by Megan Ingram-Jones