Top 5 Tips for Staying On Track This Summer

Top 5 Tips for
Staying On Track This Summer

BBQ's, Parties, and Vacations, OH MY!

It's summertime, the kids are home, it's chaos, it's fun, it's travel, it's parties, it's food, it's cocktails, it's distractions, it's stress, it's all over the place!  A lot of us struggle to stay on track with our health, fitness, and wellness goals in the summertime in large part because the routines that kept us on track the rest of the year don't work (or don't exist!) in the summertime.   

This really only becomes a problem if we don't acknowledge that it's different and adjust. It's like we keep trying to fit the square peg (old routines) into the round hole (summertime) and then get frustrated and give up when it doesn't work. 

I've noticed there's seems to be 2 types in the summertime (and I've been both!):   
type 1: "It's never too late to get that summer bod!"  - this person starts some kind of crazy restrictive diet plan or exercise program to drop weight fast.  But it's summertime and they don't stick to it very long because it's super hard OR they lose the weight but regain it quickly because their quick weight loss was unsustainable and then begins the shame spiral about what a failure they are . . . again.
type 2: "F-it, I can't stick to anything over the summer, I'm not even going to try"  - this type gives up on their health, wellness, and fitness goals, and decides to pick it back up in the fall when the kids go back to school and we're back on a routine. And thus continues the yo-yo diet cycle.

May I propose to you that there's some middle ground here? A place where you can have your cake AND eat it too, enjoy your summer AND stay on track, live your life AND still lose weight.  In fact this middle ground is where I live all year round and it's what I teach in the Healthy Mind Healthy Body Program.  Listen up to this episode for my top 5 tips for staying on track this summer so you can have fun and keep moving forward!


PS. the Healthy Mind, Healthy Body Program is OPEN!  You can start immediately with the program and coaching, so go to to learn more and get registered!

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Full transcription available at the bottom of this post

Show Notes: 

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If you struggle with yo-yo dieting then you know how hard it is to make any real lasting change.  Unfortunately most women get stuck in the belief that being on a diet is the only way to lose weight and get healthy, and when they inevitably fail they’ve destroyed their self esteem, destroyed their relationship with food, and get stuck in a guilt/shame spiral that starts the whole process over again.  
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That’s why I created the Healthy Mind, Healthy Body Programto teach you how to make a real, lasting transformation in your Mind AND Body.   


Full Transcript: 

Welcome back to the no nonsense wellness Podcast. Today we're going to talk about how to stick to your plan. During the summertime, we all either fall into one of two camps, we decide that summertime, I'm gonna work hard, I'm gonna get my summer body, I'm gonna do this diet, I'm gonna do this exercise plan, I'm gonna do all these things. Or we're like, Oh my gosh, it's way too hard to stick to something in the summertime, I'm barbecuing, I'm traveling, I'm doing all the things. I'm home with the kids. There's no way I could stick to something. What I want to talk to you about today is there's middle ground to be had here. You don't have to be doing crazy diets. And you also don't have to give everything up just because it's summertime. You can stick to your plan, you can keep moving forward on your goals. And I'm going to give you four really big tips today on just how to do that. Okay, let’s go!

Welcome back to the no nonsense wellness podcast, the place for women who are trying to do all the things and stay healthy, sane and actually enjoy life in the process. Hey, I'm Tara, a trained therapist, a life coach, a nutrition coach and a fitness instructor. And I'm on a mission

to help you take back control of your mind, health and life. Each week, I'll be cutting through the nonsense and getting real with you. I'll bring you the insight and information you need to take control of your weight and health. Find food freedom. And finally break free from the thoughts that are sabotaging you and holding you back. You, my friend, are powerful, and the world needs you to start showing up in a bigger way. It's time to get unstuck and start moving forward. So let's pop in those earbuds, tie up those shoes. Let's walk and talk.

Before we get going, I just want to remind you that the Healthy Mind Healthy Body program is open for registration right now, that program was created for women just like you who want to learn how to take back control over foods so that you can lose weight and get healthy for good. Without any more restrictive diets. No more counting, no more measuring, no more crazy restricting diets. Learning how to lose weight while you live your life. When you register, you start immediately learning. And you also get three months of coaching with me to hold your hand and walk you through the whole process. I know that this is something that can change everything for you. So if that sounds good, head to 

So today we're talking about how to stick to your plans in the summertime. And of course here we're talking mainly about your diet plans, your food plans, your working out plans, your goals that you had set, whatever it is that you're working on. Like I said, we always fall into one of two camps. Now I have found myself in both of these places, at different summers. One place being like I'm getting into that bikini, whatever it takes, and I'm like counting macros, and I'm doing all these crazy workouts and I'm doing all these things, right? I have a little bit more energy in the summer, I feel better in the summer. So sometimes I try to tackle stuff like that. Other years, however, I've been like forget this, I don't want to do all this madness. I want to go on vacation, I want to have fun. I want to have a cocktail when I want one. Like I want to go to the barbecue and eat things. I don't want to worry about dumb diets. And so what I want to talk to you about then is the middle ground, you absolutely can keep moving forward in your weight loss journey in your health journey. You don't have to give everything up because you feel like it's just too much in the summer pulling you in other directions. You also don't have to do hardcore stuff in the summer, right? You don't have to stick to these crazy diets or these crazy workout plans to still see forward progress. I think that's like a mental shift that so many of us have to make. We think that moving forward in our weight loss and health goals require crazy action. It does not. Sometimes it's the very smallest things that we do consistently over time that make the biggest impact. So I have four tips for you today. Four real keys about how to keep moving forward during the summer when you're pulled in lots of different directions. 

The first tip is this: you need to just really get clear on what your endgame is here.   Like what is this something that you're even trying to stick to? What is your forward progress? What does that look like? Where are you going? Are you trying to lose 20 pounds or are you trying to work out four times a week? Are you trying to add a salad a day like well? What is the actual thing that you're trying to stick to? Now? I know this is a weird question because a lot of us, we just go through our day and go through our life. And we're just in this perpetual state of, I'm trying to lose weight. Like, that is the most that we have defined what we are trying to do just I'm trying to lose weight.

You've probably realized at this point that that's not clear enough, that is not a clear enough destination for you to stick to anything and actually lose weight and or keep it off. If you find if you're like, Oh, crap, that's me. If you find that you are one of the people who you don't have a clear cut goal, like what is the end game? Like? What is the thing you are trying to do? What is the thing that you're trying to reach? What is the actual goal, if you don't have that? super clear and super simple that you could spit it out to me in two seconds, if I asked you, if it's not on the tip of your tongue like that, we need to go back, we need to go back to the beginning and create that goal first. So if you have not downloaded that free goal setting workbook, I want you to go to, or you can just hop on my website,, and hit the Resources tab. It's right there. So that's, go there, download the Make It Happen workbook, it's going to walk you through my entire process for goal setting. So that you have a very clear, concise, easy to understand idea about exactly where you're going and why you're going there and how you're going to get there. That's the beginning you have to start there, you have to begin with the end in mind, as Stephen Covey would say, if you don't know where you're going, then there's no way that you're ever going to get there. If you go to the airport, and you don't know what your destination is you just walk up to the counter like I don't know, send me somewhere, that's probably not going to work out very well for you. So if you know I am going to Arizona, then you will hop on the flight and go to Arizona makes sense. You need to know where you're going. And that workbook is going to help you do that. So that's step number one, if you want to stay on track with something during the summer, you need to know what you're on track with. Okay, well, what's the end game here? 

Tip number two, then, is for you to just be realistic. Like really Don't set yourself up for failure here. Why are you trying to do this thing in the summertime, I'm not saying that it's a bad thing to start to try and get healthy or to lose weight in the summertime, I think it's a great time I like I said in the summertime is when I feel the best. So if I'm going to try and tackle something new it often is in the summertime, because I have a little more mental energy to think about it, you know, my days are a little bit easier. And the sun is out and I have a little bit more energy, I just feel better. So I definitely am not telling you to don't do anything in the summertime. In fact, quite the opposite. But I also want you to be really realistic about what you're trying to do. If you pick some kind of super restrictive diet, knowing that in the summer, you're gonna go on camping trips, and you're gonna have barbecues and you're gonna be traveling and you're gonna do all these things. And you know, going in, it's gonna be really hard to stick to that. Why would you do that? Why would you do that to yourself? Why would you pick something you know is going to be super hard to stick to knowing that it's going to be a struggle for this entire summer. Don't set yourself up for failure. Why would you do that to yourself? Why would you sign up for that intense workout program, we have to work out twice a day, and do all these things. When you know that the kids are home with you all day, you're going to be pulled in a million directions and it's going to be super hard for you to actually find the time to do this. Why would you pick that pick something else? You can do that? 

Listen, everything in life has a season. Yes, summertime is a season but it's a season of your life as well. Just be honest with yourself about what's realistic for you right now in the summertime in this season, knowing all the other things that you've got going on. Absolutely keep on working on your weight loss, and your health and wellness goals, but just again, be really realistic about what will actually fit into your life. My major philosophy, I am a firm believer that your weight loss and your health should fit into your life. You should not be trying to fit your life around a food plan and you should not be trying to fit your life around a diet or some kind of exercise program around your latest restrictive thing that you signed yourself up for. Those things should fit into your life. So make sure that you're being really honest with yourself about what is realistic for you to do and to achieve and to stick to in the summertime. Hey, otherwise, we're just setting ourselves up for failure. And where does that get us? Then we go off the thing that we said we were gonna do. We go off the diet. Now we're a failure again. Now we shame spiral again. Now we think about how horrible of a person we are, and we're never going to lose the weight. And we're never going to stick to it, right? Like, why? Why set yourself up for that when you could just create something that you know you can stick to, and then you can stick to it. And then you can pat yourself on the back until you tell yourself how awesome you are. Since that, that sounds so much better. I think so. 

The third key for sticking to your plan this summer is having an actual plan, have a plan. And I don't just mean a plan in general, but I mean, a plan for every situation that you are going to face. So we talked about the 24 hour food plan a couple episodes ago, if you haven't listened to that, that is a system that I teach members of the Healthy Mind Healthy Body program to get a hold of and become aware of what they're eating in a day, and how that's working for them and or how it's not working for them. But you need to be aware of what's going on, right. And so if you are not already making a 24 hour food plan, at the very least, you can make yourself a plan for the different events or the different things that you're doing. Create the plan before you go, that is super duper key. Okay, so let's talk about a few possible things. 

Maybe you're going to like a barbecue or a graduation or some kind of event like that, what do you know going in are going to be the things that you're going to want to eat while you're there. Like I know going in, there's a pretty good chance that I am going to have whatever meat is on the barbecue ribs would be number one in burgers, chicken like whatever, definitely going for that there's probably some sort of delicious salad like a potato salad or something that I'm gonna go for. There's hopefully some kind of gluten free, dairy free dessert option that I can have. Because if there is, I'm definitely eating it. Like, I know the things that I'm gonna go for. So you make a plan ahead of time, what are the things that you know you're going to eat and plan for how much of them you're going to eat? How does that fit into the rest of your day? So perhaps, if I know that tonight, I'm going to a barbecue. And I'm going to plan I don't know what exactly what's going to be there. I don't know exactly the dishes. But I know that there's going to be some kind of meat, there's going to probably be some kind of salads and there's probably going to be some kind of fruits and there's going to be some kind of desserts, right? Those are like pretty safe bets at every barbecue you go to. So I know I'm going to put on my plan. I'm going to eat this much meat. And then I'm going to eat this much salad and then I'm going to eat this much dessert. Okay, I know that going in. And then I can fit that into the rest of the day. And I can think about okay, I know that I'm definitely going to eat dessert. I'm definitely going to eat these things tonight. So today, for lunch, I'm gonna have a smoothie. And I'm gonna get lots of spinach and fruit and lots of good stuff in there to make sure I'm really up and my nutrients and like really making this whole thing work into my day. Do you see that? 

This is a forethought that I'm having in the morning. I am planning out my day in the morning. I know what's coming that way. I don't go to the barbecue. And think to myself, Oh, I can't have that because I already had this today. And oh, what if I eat this? Oh no. Now I'm gonna eat this. Oh, I'm gonna eat Oh, I'm such a pig, or oh, I can't have anything. Oh, no, I'm just gonna eat a carrot. Oh, no, I'm just gonna eat this one carrot. And pretend like I'm just fine, right? Just why? Why would we do that to ourselves? Go in with a plan. You know, there's going to be s'mores there. You love s'mores. So plan for eating some smores. Like, then you're not surprised about it. And you can feel good that you made a plan and you stuck to it instead of in the moment, choosing a bunch of shit stuff or choosing a bunch of bad things that are not going to serve you or just eating way too much other things. Like there's a million ways you're going to derail yourself. So why don't you just make a plan that you can stick to make sense. Also think about when you're going to a barbecue? What are you going to bring? Like, I always bring a dish that I know I can eat right? Because I have to be gluten free dairy free. I'm not saying that everyone has to be that but for me for health reasons I have to do that. And so I always bring a dish that I know I can eat and that I know is healthy for me and that I know makes me feel good. I know I have an option. So why don't you do the same? Instead of bringing that big huge cake that you're going to feel guilty about eating or whatever? Why would you bring it why don't you just bring something that you feel good about eating or bring the cake and put on your plan. I'm gonna have a piece of cake tonight and then have a piece of cake and don't have any feelings about it. Just enjoy it. So that makes sense. You have to create a plan so you can stick to it. You cannot go and then make decisions in the moment. 

Let's talk about vacations for a second. Now vacation eating is a little bit harder to plan. But you are still always in charge. You are the only person that is putting food in your own mouth. Okay. It's always you. So you are always in charge of what you're eating. So when you go on vacation, you can still create a plan, you can look at the menu when you go to the restaurant, and you can choose foods that you think are going to be a healthy choice. And then you can choose to not overeat those foods, stopping food when you feel full. Now here's one thing you need to think about. Restaurants notoriously are giving you way more food than you actually are going to need and anyone sitting, they are setting you up for an overeating situation. So you need to go in knowing that. So what I do, there's a method that I teach, the hand method. And so I sort of measure serving sizes by different portions of my hand. That's a method that I teach in the Healthy Mind Healthy Body program. And so I just set those aside, right, and I eat what I set aside. And then if for some reason, I'm still hungry after that, then I'll eat a little bit more, but usually, I'm not I know how much food I need, at any given time to satisfy my hunger, right, I can tell how hungry I am, because I've practiced this for a long time. 

So when you go to a restaurant, set aside on your plate the food that you intend to eat, check in with yourself, after you eat that amount of food. You can just divide your whole plate in half. Just cut it right down the middle and half, eat the half and then give it a little bit of time and decide am I still hungry for a little bit more? Okay, take another like 1/8th or 1/4, put it over and eat that little bit. Am I still hungry? Then you can decide again? What do I think, I've had enough. I don't know, it's up to you. But I'm just telling you on that plate is probably way more food than you need. So maybe you also get dishes to share. Maybe you shared dishes with a kid or with a spouse or a friend, or even ordering, like a half serving or if you have a fridge in your hotel room, you can just keep the leftovers and eat them the next day. Whenever I travel, I always go to a grocery store. So that I have options in the room for me now, this is twofold for me, number one, because I'm cheap. And I don't want to eat out three meals a day, I just don't even like to eat out three meals a day. So I bring food into the room not so much because I want to snack all day. But because I want to just create small meals for myself that I know we're going to satisfy. 

I also just eat less generally during the day on vacation, we're busy or doing stuff we're out in the sun. When I'm busy like that, I don't think about hunger as much I don't think about food as much. You know, oftentimes, I will sort of eat a good breakfast and then not eat a lot at lunch and then eat a really good dinner that sometimes is vacation for me, that's totally fine. You can do that. You don't have to eat three square meals a day, or every two hours or six small meals a day like you don't drop the prescription. Okay, you do what's working for you. But just give yourself some options. So I always go to the grocery store, whether I have a fridge or not, you know, I will go to the grocery store and get myself some options. That just helps me keep me on track. That's what I do. That's how I plan to keep myself on track on vacation. When it comes to workouts. I go on vacation. I purposely booked places that have little gyms in them. And I go in with a plan. I know out of this many days on vacation, I'm going to work out this many days. And these are the things that I'm doing. I do that on purpose. I am intentional about it. If you're not a gym worker out or whatever your thing is, you decide what is that going to look like for you on vacation? Are you going to get up and go for a walk in the morning before the kids get up? Like what's your plan? Just make sure again, make a plan. 

Let's talk about if you are home with the kids all day, because this is one that a lot of us face and I am now a homeschool mom, I have been for the last few years. And so I've got to talk to a lot of other homeschool moms who have been doing this literally for their kids entire lives. They've been home with their kids. And so they have like they've got it down like they've got it figured out even though as a mom, it doesn't ever really feel like we have figured it out like every year has its new challenges, right? Every phase has new challenges. But for those of you who are home in the summer with your kids, and you're like what the heck is going on, this can be a tough transition time. Sometimes there's extra stress, there's extra boredom, sometimes you just can't find a moment to like mentally shut down. And so that sort of situation can often lead to eating more during the day, right? We're eating out of stress, we're eating out of boredom, we're eating out of just trying to distract ourselves from whatever chaos is ensuing in our own house. 

And so that's something I really want you to be aware of is if your eating is increasing in the summer, and it's increasing because of boredom, stress, escapism, whatever it is. I want you to just create some awareness around that that's gonna be really important for you to notice about yourself in the summertime because again, you can't address things that you don't notice. And then like a broken record, I'm going to tell you to make a plan for the day and stick to it. Okay, go back to the 24 hour food plan episode, make yourself a plan. Because if you have a plan for that day, even if all you're doing is staying at home that day, if you have a plan for the day, it's gonna be a whole lot easier for you to stick to that plan. Instead of now you've got kids at home and you're making them breakfast and you're making them lunch and you're making them snacks and you're making them dinner, you are literally in the kitchen all day making your children food, I know, I've been there, I've done this. And so you are naturally just going to be around food more you are going to be in the kitchen more, you are going to be putting things unconsciously in your mouth more often. So if you get up in the morning, and you create a plan for the food that you're going to eat that day, you will be much more likely to stick to that plan and not randomly just put stuff in your face, you will be much more likely to actually make yourself a meal, instead of just sort of snacking on random leftovers that your kids didn't eat all day, right? Raise your hand if you're guilty of that. I certainly am. Not so much now because my kids are teenagers. But when they were young, absolutely. I didn't actually make meals for myself hardly ever. I just ate their random leftovers crust nuggets, macaroni, whatever, I just that's what I ate. That's not going to work sister. So make yourself a plan for what you are going to eat that day. 

The last piece of that is, I really want you to check your thoughts on this one. Because if you are sitting around during the summer all day thinking about how you wish summer was over, this is so hard, it's overwhelming. It's so hard having my kids home, or any other unhelpful thought, it's way more likely that you're going to reach for food for comfort or distraction. So you really need to check your thoughts about your situation in the summertime. And if your thoughts are unhelpful, you need to choose different thoughts, thoughts that are going to be more helpful thoughts about what a blessing it is that I get to spend this time with them? I only have this one summer, where my kids are these ages. What are the things that I want to do? What do we want to learn from each other? What kind of things we want to do together? You need to check your own thoughts about what's going on for you this summer. Okay, now I know it's hard, it can be very hard. You're trying to work, you're trying to take care of the kids. It seems like just too much all the time. But you need to check your thoughts about that. Okay, be honest with yourself, check your thoughts. And if they're not helpful, you need to change them, you need to work on changing them. 

The other piece that I want to talk about, in sort of having a plan, again, is there's a lot more situations, I feel like in the summertime that our drinking times. Makes sense, right? You're on a boat, you're at the beach, you're on vacation, you're at the barbecue, there's a lot of more situations where people are drinking alcohol more often. And so I just want you to be aware of that I'm sure you are. So if you're someone who partakes in that, I am going to again, encourage you like a broken record to make a plan, make a plan for drinking, just like you would make a plan for eating, make a plan for drinking. So you know, you're going to be laying by the pool all day or you know you're going to this barbecue, or you know that you're going to be in my case, on vacation camping and boating all day.

Make a plan, those drinks are really going to add up. So decide in advance how many drinks are you going to have in this allotted amount of time, whatever it is you're doing, how many drinks are you going to have? What type of freak Are you going to have? What is the actual drink that you are going to be allowing yourself? How much water are you going to drink in between those drinks. So for example, your plan might be I know that I'm going to lay by the pool from 11 o'clock to four o'clock and in that time, I'm going to have three drinks. And in between those drinks, I'm going to have at least 16 ounces of water before I get another drink, okay, like you can get real specific about your plan. Otherwise, you are going to just make crappy decisions in the moment we make way better decisions when we do it ahead of time. 

The last piece to this the last key to sticking to your plan in the summertime is to just stick to the basics and the basics are, eat when you're hungry. Stop when you're full. Listen, it's summertime, you're going to indulge. You're going to do all the things you're going to eat the cake, you're gonna have the Smarties, you're gonna have the ribs, you're gonna have the macaroni salad, you're gonna have the Mai Tai by the pool, like you're going to do all the things and I encourage you to do all the things you should be able to go out there and live your life and not have to restrict yourself however overeating is over eating is over eating so it doesn't matter if you're over eating ribs or over eating broccoli, if you eat too much, eat too much. So You need to stick to the very basic idea of eating only when you're hungry and stopping when you're full. If you can stick to those two super basic things, you will continue to see progress over the summer. Does that make sense? I know that seems really simplified. But have you ever tried to just simply do that? Have you ever just actually tried to do just that. So I hope you noticed a theme and overarching theme in this entire episode, and that is, always have a plan. Okay? 

That is truly the key to weight loss in any season. pre-planning is key. Not only do you have an overarching plan, which is creating your goal that you're working towards, which we talked about, but also having a daily plan, a moment plan, a plan for drinking a plan for vacation, a plan for that barbecue, a plan for my food for the day, when you make decisions ahead of time, you will make better decisions, you will make decisions that are in line with the goals that you've created for yourself. If you try to make decisions in the moment, you often will make crappy decisions because your brain will be like, Oh, it's fine. Do it just this one time. Oh, it's fine. Have another piece. Oh, whatever. Oh, we already blew it today. Anyway, just go for it. Eat all the things. Oh, who cares, you never get these chips. So just eat an entire bag of chips like your brain is in a hole. And if you can go into something with a plan, then your brain has less of a chance to be in a hole. Does that make sense? When you have a plan, you don't have to make decisions in the moment. You don't have to fight with temptation. You don't have to rely on motivation. You don't have to fight a brain that's tired of making decisions, or a brain that's talking you into things. It'll be fine. Just those ones. You don't have to work against any of those things. Because you have a plan, just stick to the plan. Does that make sense. 

And lastly, I just want you to enjoy your summer, you absolutely can have your cake and eat it too. Don't let anyone tell you otherwise, you do not need to stick to some kind of crazy restrictive diet and let it ruin your summer. Have fun and make progress. That's what I'm here for just in life in general. Not even in the summertime, I want you to have fun, live your life and still make forward progress. That's what I am here for. So friend, if this was helpful to you, if these were some tips that you liked, share them with a friend, share this episode, put it on your Instagram, send it out to them. I really appreciate the shares and head over to iTunes or Spotify and give me a review. That really helps other people find this podcast. They can hear stuff like this too. I hope that was helpful. If you have any questions, hop in the community group on Facebook just called no nonsense. And I will see you over there. And until we talk again, my friends be well.

Friends, thanks so much for being here. If you found value in today's episode, will you do me a favor and head over to iTunes? Find the no nonsense wellness podcast and subscribe and leave me a review. It would mean the world to me and help other people find the show. And I'd love to connect with you more. So find me on Instagram. I'm @tarafaulmann. Take a screenshot of this episode and share it in your stories and tag me. I'll see you over there.

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