Don't let occasional splurges derail your weight loss efforts.
Weight loss scale
Credit: Lee Harrelson

Making healthy changes in your eating and lifestyle takes patience and time. It's easy to feel like giving up when you overeat over the weekend, but don’t let occasional splurges get you off track. Keep these tips in mind as you continue taking small steps forward.

1. Focus on fuel groups, not just calories. If you had a few doughnuts at breakfast and wish you hadn't, don't skip lunch to make up the calories. Instead, round out what was missing at breakfast like lean proteins, veggies, and low-fat dairy, and include those in lunch. If you're having a hard time working colorful fruits and veggies into your day, try doubling up at one meal. For example, add extra lettuce and bell pepper slices to your pita sandwich.

2. Do a memory check. Before you eat, do a quick review of what you ate at the last meal and/or snack. Remembering what you have eaten most recently may help encourage you to eat less the next time around. Remember, "I CAN EAT AGAIN...just not right now."

3. Learn from your lapses. Do not skip the next meal to punish yourself for a splurge. A big splurge can result in more self awareness of the "why" behind your choice, which can lead to greater confidence and motivation for the next time you find yourself in the same situation.

Tammy Beasley, RD, CSSD, CEDRD is a registered, licensed dietitian, spinning instructor, and certified specialist in sports nutrition and eating disorders. She is the author of Rev It Up-The Lifestyle Diet That Puts You In The Driver's Seat.