Losing weight has never been this easy-3 Month Diet Plan For Weight Loss. If your New Year’s Resolution was to get in shape and lose weight, then this is YOUR plan. This diet plan is specially designed for busy people who have limited time to workout. If you are just starting out on your weight loss journey, or if you’ve tried everything under the sun without success…this 3 months diet plan for weight loss is definitely for you!
How to Lose 30 Pounds in 3 Months With a Diet Plan
A calendar showing days of the month.
Losing 30 pounds in three months is a lofty goal, but it’s achievable if you’ve got the motivation. A three-month deadline puts your rate of loss at an average of about 2 1/2 pounds per week, just slightly above the ideal range of 1 to 2 pounds per week recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
You can safely lose weight at this faster rate, as long as you choose a diet plan that emphasizes diligent portion control, healthy food choices and exercise. Always check with your personal physician before beginning a diet-and-exercise program to be sure it’s appropriate for you!
Potential for Losing 30 Pounds in 3 Months
Weight loss happens when you reduce your calorie intake below what you burn. To lose 30 pounds in three months, you’ll have to create a deficit of 8,750 calories per week — or about 1,250 calories per day.
For the average adult, who requires about 2,000 calories per day to maintain the current weight, a 1,250-calorie deficit is unhealthy and unsustainable because it would leave just 750 calories on which to live. In general, men need more calories per day than women, even when trying to lose weight.
But if you have a significant amount of weight to lose, chances are you burn more than the 2,000-calorie-per-day average. Consult with your physician or use an online basal metabolic calculator, which estimates your daily calorie maintenance needs, to ensure you burn at least 2,450 calories daily. This ensures you can safely trim the 1,250 calories daily to lose 30 pounds in three months.
Exercise to Assist in Weight Loss
If trimming the required number of calories is not possible for your frame, combine eating less with increased physical activity. Exercise boosts your daily calorie burn significantly.
Aim for 60 to 90 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic — such as brisk walking — on most days to burn more calories, along with regular strength training to maintain muscle. You can then reduce calories by only 500 to 1,000 per day to achieve the goal deficit of 1,250 calories per day.
How much of an increase in caloric burn you get from physical activity depends on your size and the intensity of the exercise. Note that if you’re already physically active and maintaining your weight, you’ll need to add more exercise duration or intensity to create a deficit that promotes loss. Consulting a personal trainer is helpful for recommendations about what types of exercise will benefit you the most and be safe for your current level of physical fitness.
Choosing a Weight-Loss Diet Plan
A sensible weight-loss plan teaches you reasonable, maintainable habits so you’ll stay in control of your weight your whole life. Drastic measures may bring immediate results, but they’re more likely to lead to serious consequences, such as low energy, muscle loss, irritability, diminished immunity, inability to concentrate and binges.
If you don’t learn to manage your eating and exercise, chances are you’ll gain all 30 pounds back — and possibly more. Go with a plan that’s sensible, doesn’t ban entire food groups, and is appropriate for your lifestyle and schedule. For example, a plan that requires lots of nightly cooking when you work 12-hour days and have children may be unsustainable and set you up for failure.
Diet plans that provide a tool for monitoring — whether it’s a food journal, a counselor or online tracker — help keep you from straying, too. To lose a significant amount of weight in a relatively short period, like three months, accountability is key.
Sample Diet Plan
How many calories you eat to lose the 30 pounds in three months is really tailored to your size, calorie needs and activity level. A sensible approach, though, usually includes eating a 2- to 4-ounce serving of protein, at least 1/2 cup of whole grains or starchy vegetable, 1 to 2 teaspoons of an unsaturated fat, and 1 to 2 cups of leafy or nonstarchy veggies at each meal.
Quality protein foods include white fish, chicken breast, lean steak, white-meat pork, tofu and egg whites. Opt for brown rice, oatmeal, quinoa and 100 percent whole-wheat bread for whole grains or sweet potatoes, winter squash or peas as starchy vegetables.
Leafy and nonstarchy vegetables include lettuce, kale, broccoli, cauliflower, tomatoes, green beans, asparagus. For healthy, unsaturated fats, choose olive and avocado oil, nut butters, raw nuts or seeds and avocados.
Your daily meal plan might consist of an egg white omelet with chopped peppers, mushrooms and tomatoes and a slice of whole-wheat toast topped with 2 teaspoons of almond butter; a tossed spinach salad with chicken breast, quinoa, olive oil and cucumbers; and flank steak, wild rice and steamed broccoli for dinner.
Although you’re trying to lose weight quickly, you can still indulge in snacks. Make them nutrient-rich choices, though, that are portion-controlled to keep calories low. Yogurt, fresh fruit — especially berries, which are low in calories — whole-grain crackers, hummus and almonds are some options to choose from. The number of calories you eat at snack time depends on your daily calorie limits.
Weight Loss Pitfalls
Your daily calorie needs are calculated according to your size. As your size shrinks with weight loss, your calorie needs change. To keep losing weight, you’ll need to adjust your calorie intake downward every time you lose five to 10 pounds.
Larsen notes that for every five pounds lost, you’ll need to decrease your intake by 25 to 50 calories. So, if you successfully lose weight when eating 1,600 calories per day at first, once you lose 15 to 20 pounds, you may have to reduce your intake by an additional 100 to 200 calories to keep dropping weight.
Even if you don’t reach your goal weight in three months, know that small changes can make a big health impact. The CDC notes that even losing 5 percent of your total body weight can lead to improvements in blood sugar levels, cholesterol and blood pressure. You’ve got this!
How to Create a 3-Month Weight Loss Plan That Can Actually Work for You
A lot can happen in 3 months.
A quarter of a year is a great time period to create weight loss goals, devise a plan, and go all in. It’s just long enough to see results but short enough to feel like you can actually stick to a plan for the whole time.
I can speak from experience on this one as my body completely changed in a span of 3 months. Yes, I was already what people would consider a healthy weight. Yes, I already knew how to lose weight and maintain it but, like most people, I was stuck. Stuck at a weight I was happy with yet I always had this inner desire to lose some more.
Losing more weight would mean that I would finally be the size that I wanted to be for as long as I can remember. That size you don’t really think is possible but would make you happy to be at least for one chapter of your life. Everyone has their own dream vision of themselves and sometimes the opportunity to make it a reality does materialize.
Whether you’re looking to lose weight for the first time or working to get the body that you’ve always wanted- here’s some insight on how to make a smart and effective plan that can work for you.
CREATE YOUR 3-MONTH WEIGHT LOSS PLAN
Your 3-month plan should include elements which encompass nutrition, physical fitness and mental and emotional wellness. By covering all of these bases you’ll be able to establish a routine that actually works, because it is comprehensive, and not just 3 months of steamed broccoli.
YOUR STATE OF MIND
Resist Making A Lot Of Rules
If you lose weight in 3 months by following strict rules, you’ll probably end up gaining a lot of it back after. It’s the classic scenario of setting yourself up to fail. Once the rules you created are no longer in place, the likelihood of returning to unhealthy eating habits is high. There may be some people who thrive off of strictly defined rules. But if you find rigid criteria stifling, you’ll probably drop them as soon as you hit your goal. Of course there need to be some guidelines to succeed, but being too restrictive can backfire. Keep your policies open – like eat less sugar, eat more vegetables, drink more water, move more and so on. Focus on sustainable lifestyle changes more than commandments.
Be Honest About What You Can’t Give Up
When it comes to dropping unhealthy foods from your diet, everyone has a different ability. It’s true, some people can quit food that isn’t good for them and never be tempted again. But other people say they’ll stop eating something but find themselves sneaking that “forbidden thing” again pretty quickly.
Being honest with yourself about what you can or can’t give up can help you set realistic goals. And if you really want to finally give up certain foods that you haven’t been able to kick, be prepared to struggle a little. Write out a list of foods you know that you should give up in order to lose weight then try your hardest to limit them. It’s ok to treat yourself once in a while, because total deprivation can also lead to overindulgence (see strict rules above) but taking an active role in minimizing unhealthy treats has multiple benefits.
Not only will you lose weight, you’ll feel stronger mentally and more empowered to win your inner battles against unhealthy habits. Once you get used to it, and push through the discomfort and time it takes to adapt, you’ll know how to apply your discipline to other unhealthy habits and really, all areas of your life.
Don’t Set Up Goals Based Around What The Scale Says
Dun dun dun. Stepping on the scale can ignite a lot of negative emotions. It can make you feel depressed or obsessive and it’s not even the best way to measure overall progress. Imagine feeling all of those negative emotions for nothing! You can weigh yourself occasionally to know the number, but don’t base everything around it. Pay attention to how your clothes fit and measure yourself before and after you start your plan to have a 360 view of what’s happening. You may end up gaining muscle, losing fat and losing inches – yet the scale alone wouldn’t reflect any of that improvement.
Don’t Obsess Over Counting Calories
Not all calories are created equally. Even though counting calories can work, you don’t want to end up being a slave to a number and making your days feel like a never-ending math equation. Tracking calories can be helpful for understanding how quickly they add up, or for thinking more about portion sizes. But don’t be the guy who misses half a lunch conversation because you’re busy trying to log your Caesar salad. Use calorie tracking as a guide, not a bible. Eating doesn’t have to be that complicated, or annoying, to be successful. Generally speaking, if you choose to eat healthy whole foods, counting calories isn’t required.
Find Your Favorite Healthy Foods And Use Them In Different Ways
Do you hate certain foods that most people would consider the “right” thing to include in a weight loss diet? Don’t do it! Figure out which healthy foods you really love and find different ways to use them. Be wary of set plans with set food choices. Individualize your plan as much as you can! You’d be surprised how many things you can do with healthy ingredients once you do a little research. If you choose to eat foods that look good on paper, but you don’t enjoy at all, it’s unlikely you’ll stick with it – plus you’ll be miserable. Rarely do people successfully lose weight when they’re unhappy. Regardless of old myths, there are ways to lose weight that don’t include joyless eating.
Think About What You Drink
A lot of calories can come from drinks, from your morning coffee to your end-of-day glass of wine. Becoming more selective about what you drink can help cut some unnecessary sugars from your diet. Water is always going to be the best choice of beverages because it supports overall good health. A general policy when it comes to drinking water to lose weight is to use the 8×8 rule – which is to have eight, eight-ounce glasses of water a day. Drinking more water helps with weight loss and helps replace other less good-for-you drinks. You can also make coffee better for you by eliminating cream and sugar. That may sound horrible, but there are some benefits to drinking black coffee that go beyond reducing your calorie intake.
Decide On A Number Ratio
You can’t possibly make the decision to eat 100 percent healthy 100 percent of the time. Well, you can try, but you’ll see quickly that it’s not possible, attainable or even necessary. A lot of people follow the 80/20 rule when they’re trying to make healthier choices, but you should find your own personal ratio.
Feeling ambitious? Try for 90/10. 90 percent of the time you make healthy choices and 10 percent of the time you eat whatever it is your heart wants. By having a ratio in mind, you can reel yourself in after a big splurge or a day of unhealthy eating. And psychologically it keeps you from feeling like you can never eat something that wouldn’t be included in a standard diet plan.
Consider An Entirely New Way Of Eating
If you’ve heard that a different way of eating is known for helping with weight loss, now is the time to take a closer look. Whether it’s keto, plant-based eating, intermittent fasting or even just meal prepping, three months is a reasonable time period to try something new to see if it can work for you long-term. This is especially applicable for people who don’t need to lose a ton of weight but want to lose what feels like stubborn weight. A new way of eating could be just what your body needs to finally start shedding the weight you didn’t think you ever could.
Get Some Exercise
Working out isn’t everyone’s thing. Some people love exercise and consider it an essential part of their routine. For others, the gym holds about the same appeal as the dentist’s office. Losing weight without working out is technically possible. But if you focus only on creating a calorie deficit through food consumption, you may drop pounds, but you’re not really getting healthier. Any type of physical activity is going to help with your weight loss, even if it’s just a daily walk at lunch or a little morning yoga. A home workout streaming subscription can also help make it easier to get access to a variety of exercise styles to help you find something you like that you think you can stick with.
Find Hobbies/Things To Do So You Are Distracted
Physical activity can often disguise itself as fun, and boredom can easily sabotage even your best weight loss efforts. Tackle both by creating a list of things to do that you make you happy. Having scheduled plans with friends, or for solo activities, can be extremely useful when you’re trying to lose weight. Come up with several ideas for activities to keep you busy during your down time before down time actually happens. It’s much harder to get motivated when you’re already in the middle of a Netflix binge and looking for snack. Bowling anyone?
Pay Attention To How Your Body Reacts To Food
This is a biggie. People assume that if something is healthy, it should automatically be part of their plan. Not necessarily. Everyone reacts differently to food and sometimes your body may just not feel right after eating certain foods. Filling your diet with foods that don’t agree with you can set you up for discomfort, unhealthy cravings and more.
Before you decide what food to include in your 3-month plan, consider doing a major trial and error experiment. For the next 24-48 hours after you eat something- pay close attention and ask yourself certain questions. Is this digesting well? Does this cause bloating? Do I feel heavier or lighter after eating this? Do I experience any type of food sensitivities to this? There are many elements to food, digestion and weight loss and knowing what agrees with your body can be a game changer.
Let Your Health Be Your Motivation
Obsessing about weight loss to look better can start to feel a little vain and get tiring after a while. And do you ever notice that when your focus is completely on losing weight to look better it happens slowly or rarely at all? For me personally, I wanted to work on healing my gut so my overall health would improve. As I put my energy into making choices based on that, I genuinely forgot most of the time that I was also working to lose weight.
If losing weight, or creating good habits that are often associated with weight loss, can make you a healthier person – make that your reason why. Fitting into an old pair of jeans is nice, but the desire to create a better life is motivation with staying power.
3-Month Weight Loss Meal Plan
If you have tried losing weight in the past, odds are you have attempted (or at the very least heard about) some form of crash diet – i.e. a restrictive and forced eating plan that claims massive results in a short amount of time. Although these diets can provide some results, they are short-lived and unsustainable. Is there a way to reach your weight loss goals all while making sustainable and healthy choices? You bet!
A balanced approach that can provide timely and impactful results is a 3-month weight loss plan. Three-month plans combine the best of sustainability and tangible results and can be approached in a way that allows followers to lose weight by building healthy habits; this is the key to successful weight loss.
Compared to more radical diets such as intermittent fasting, low-carb, or keto, a balanced 3-month weight loss plan can give followers the necessary time to create new habits that can help lead to sustainable weight loss. It should also be noted that there is nothing magic about the 3-month time period. This amount of time can be adjusted based on the needs and goals of those following the plan! In general, 3 months is enough time for choices to turn into habits and for natural weight loss rhythms to even out into substantial weight loss.
How much weight can I lose?
Although results always vary, using a healthy and safe weight loss target of 1-2 pounds per week, followers can expect to lose anywhere from 10-30 pounds in 3-months. This is substantial weight loss and doesn’t come without commitment and mindfulness.
Total weight loss can also depend on overall activity. Although you can see awesome results by just mixing up your food choices, incorporating more activity can also play a huge role in weight loss on a 3-month plan. Activity like food choices and calorie goals should be individualized and focus on balance. If you aren’t extremely active, try taking the stairs, parking further away from the store, or taking the dog on an extra walk. Increasing activity throughout the day can have a direct impact on fat loss and yield an increase in muscle mass. You will be surprised how quickly this activity adds up and how much of an impact it can have on weight loss.
When starting a weight loss plan of any kind, it is also important to find ways to measure progress. For some, this looks like daily weigh-ins. For others, relying on energy levels and how clothes are fitting is a better approach. Whatever you choose, consistently measuring progress can help you learn the natural ups and downs your body experiences. Remember, weight loss is not always linear. There will be ups and downs along the way. Learning to embrace these times and even work with them will be key to successful weight loss.
How many calories should I eat?
In order to lose weight, a specific balance of calories must be present – but what is the right balance? There are tons of 3-month meal plans out in the diet universe, all with calorie limits that claim to help you lose weight. Although calorie balance is important, your target calorie budget should be completely individualized and based off of your goals, eating preferences, and sustainability. You may lose weight quickly by restricting your calories, but if you cannot sustain this, or it only lasts for 3 weeks, is this meal plan effective and sustainable? Not quite!
By counting calories, you can gain more information about your diet – but ultimately calories are just one piece of the puzzle. The key to sustainable weight loss is a comprehensive approach that focuses on overall health, and considers nutrition, activity, and overall well-being.
Let’s dive into a sample meal plan to give you some ideas on how to create and follow a 3-month weight loss plan!
3-month weight loss meal plan
Breakfast: Overnight oats
Lunch: Mixed green salad, avocado, chicken breast
Dinner: Grilled Salmon and broccoli
Snack: Coconut energy balls
Breakfast: Egg cups w/ veggies
Lunch: Chicken, rice, and broccoli bowl
Dinner: Quick shrimp stir-fry
Snack: Hummus and veggies
Breakfast: Overnight oats
Lunch: Slow cooker vegetable soup
Dinner: Grilled chicken/veggie kabobs
Snack: Apple and almonds
Breakfast: Green smoothie
Lunch: Leftover Chicken Kabobs
Dinner: Grilled Romaine and Cherry tomato salad
Snack: Coconut energy balls
Breakfast: Overnight Oats
Lunch: Grilled Zucchini and Hummus Wrap
Dinner: Leftover hash
Snack: Apple and almonds