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Too many of us expect absolute perfection when we embark on a new fitness or weight-loss program. Perhaps the more logical approach is to acknowledge that we probably will fall short of the ideal at some point — and to have tactics in place for getting back on track.

For example, if you’ve over-indulged in food over the weekend, you might regain dietary balance during the week with strategies like these:

  • Eat only fruits and raw vegetables for between-meal snacks.
  • If you eat dessert after lunch or dinner, make fruit that dessert. If you need to make it interesting, use a low-fat yogurt dip or make a baked-fruit dessert with apples or pears.
  • Be sure to drink your 8 glasses of water (more if you’re exercising that day). Water may help you feel less hungry.
  • DON’T skip meals as a way of compensating for a weekend’s calorie overload. If you eat too little, your metabolism will slow down.