50+ SAMPLE Diet and Exercise Plan

What Is a Diet and Exercise Plan?

A diet and exercise plan is an action plan that aims to optimize one’s health by incorporating regular habits of healthy nutrition and physical activity. 

According to data published by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), a national health and nutrition survey showed that between 2013 to 2016, 49.1% of U.S. adults attempted to lose weight. The data also revealed that 41.7% of men tried to lose weight; whereas, women had a higher percentage at 56.4%. 

Tips For Creating a Diet and Exercise Plan

There is much advice out there for going on certain diets or working out the proper way. And whatever your fitness or health goal, you need to learn to filter and discern these different information and advice that come your way. Just because a diet or exercise plan has worked for one person does not automatically mean it will work for you. The next time you start any diet or exercise plan, keep in mind the following tips: 

Get an accountability buddy. When you make the decision to lead a healthier lifestyle, it can be difficult to sustain it in the long-run if you only have yourself to rely on. It’s important to seek support from those close to you. Whether it is starting a new fitness program, going to the gym, or committing to a new diet, it might be a good idea to assign yourself an accountability buddy. This person should be someone you can trust such as a good friend or a close family member. However, others assign the role to their personal trainer or fitness coach. Having someone there to provide support and motivation can be very helpful especially in times of difficulty. Everyone has days where they don’t feel 100% or days when they feel unmotivated and uninspired. With an accountability buddy, you have someone to rely on that will help push and encourage you when you can’t find the motivation yourself. Let balance be the goal. More often than not, crash diets and thoughtless workout programs always have a way of backfiring. There are unfortunate cases wherein extreme weight loss programs deliver short-term benefits but in the end, turn out to be unsustainable in the long run. This is often the case when people set goals that are too overreaching. Their goals become too narrow and one-dimensional that they fail to take into account all factors that may affect their ability to see their goals through. Thus, seeking balance ought to be the fundamental premise behind your goals. In the case of diets, depriving oneself of a certain food group rarely yields successful outcomes. Opting not to have rest days or recovery days from intense physical activity can leave you feeling drained and burned out. As the popular saying goes, moderation is key. Finding the right balance is a much more sustainable way of accomplishing a wellness goal. Find what works for you. As mentioned earlier, it does not necessarily mean that just because a diet plan produced amazing results for your friend that it will work in the same way for you. Every individual’s body and needs are different. In order to truly maximize any diet or exercise plan, the best approach you can try is consulting the professionals. From dieticians, food nutritionists to certified fitness trainers, taking advice from professionals can help ensure that you are following the correct methods that are suited to your needs and body. Before embarking on a meal plan or workout schedule, consider consulting your doctor or any health professional mentioned previously. It could save you a lot of wasted energy, time, and costly programs that ultimately do nothing for your health. Take advantage of home workouts. Gym rates and personal trainers can often come with a hefty price tag. If you are trying to save up or lessen your expenses, exploring home workouts could be worth a try. Thanks to technology and the internet, access to fitness and wellness information has never been easier. You only need to go on YouTube, Instagram, or any social media platform to discover numerous content on health and fitness. Social media influencers offer tons of curated workouts and videos that you can easily follow along with in the comfort of your home. All kinds of healthy recipes and instructional videos are also widely available on the same platforms. Choosing to lead a healthier lifestyle does not need to be expensive and maximizing home workouts and online healthy recipes can help cut costs drastically.

Types of Diet and Exercise Plans

Diet and exercise plans can be classified in various ways. There are several types of diet programs that people are familiar with, which includes the keto diet, veganism, or the South Beach Diet. Exercise plans, too, can be grouped using similar methods. When it comes to diets and workouts, one of the most important things to keep in mind is setting a reasonable timeline for any program. The following examples are popular diet and exercise plans based on fixed schedules. Although, it is crucial to note that these plans are flexible and subjective. Just because a plan is a 7-day program, it does not mean that the diet has failed if no immediate results are noted on the 7th day. Again, the goal is consistency and staying committed to your goal even after the final day.        

30-day Plan. Studies show that it takes 21 days to form a habit. A month is more than enough time to enact changes to your lifestyle and get into a healthier way of life. It isn’t easy, but with enough determination and commitment, it can be done. Whether it is a 30-day exercise challenge or a 30-day meal plan, the key is curating a program that is both realistic and engaging. A month may seem like a long time and you can quickly lose interest if you fail to plan carefully. Introducing variety into your month-long program can help stave off boredom or disengagement. For example, if you are planning to complete a 30-day exercise challenge, switch it up and incorporate various workout styles. Alternate between days of cardio, stretching, strength training, etc. Or you can schedule certain days where you focus on your upper body, lower body, breathing, etc. 7-day Plan. A week may seem like a breeze but if you really put some thought and intention into it, just one week can make a huge difference. To illustrate, a well-planned weekly meal program can consist of healthy food groups all packed into each meal for every day of the week. A typical weekly diet plan would comprise a nutritious breakfast, lunch, dinner, and even snacks. People naturally crave assortment and can get tired of having the same kind of food everyday. So variety for each meal and day of the week would be the ideal. Lastly, don’t feel discouraged if no immediate results are noticed by the last day. The key is not in accomplishing everything within just 7 days; but it is in forming good habits and introducing healthy changes to your lifestyle. And it all starts with that crucial first step- even if it’s just for a week. A weekly exercise plan or diet plan can even be considered a trial period to test out a program if it is really suited to your needs. Slow yet intentional baby steps matter much more than quick but unsustainable results.

How to Create a Diet and Exercise Plan

To create a diet and exercise plan, you must have the commitment and determination to see it through. All too often, plans fail to materialize because there is a substantial lack of commitment. The instruction guide below outlines simple yet easy steps in crafting a diet and exercise plan that can easily be personalized according to your needs.   

Step 1: Set Health Goals

The first step in any kind of plan is establishing the objective. What is your goal in creating a diet and exercise plan? Why is it important to you? What can you gain if the plan were to materialize? Setting the proper health goals will make it easier for you to work out the rest of the plan. Health goals may vary from individual to individual. Common goals include weight loss, a more toned or defined figure, or even a stronger immune system. Whatever the objective is, it’s important to keep in mind that overall health is more important than merely external physique. There is nothing wrong with working hard to attain a desired body or look, but incorporating healthy habits should always underlie such a goal.  

Step 2: Decide on a Format

Once you have determined your health objectives, select a format that will work for you. Since it is a personal plan, you have the freedom to customize your plan any way you seem fit. There are a number of ways you can present your plan. If you are planning to try out a certain meal plan, a 7-day diet program may be worth a try. The ideal structure of your diet and exercise plan must be one that can most maximize your health goals. Most plans are presented in table format or a detailed schedule. Whatever your preference, try to keep it as organized and detailed as possible.    

Step 3: Set a Reasonable Timeline

A diet and exercise plan will mean nothing if everything is just limited to theory. Action and practice are what will garner results. It is important to set reasonable expectations for your diet program and exercise activities. Once you’ve outlined your plans, keep a timeline or schedule for its implementation. For example, stay organized with your 30-day workout challenge plan by keeping a calendar so it is easier to track or monitor. Having a reliable and predictable timeline promotes discipline and accountability. Although, there will always be unexpected changes and modifications to your timeline so it’s important to remain flexible yet still committed to the final goal.        

Step 4: Don’t Forget the Fine Details

A key element in an effective diet and exercise plan is the details. And how do you make sure you get the right details and accurate information? It is through responsible research and sound consultation. Before drafting your plans, ensure that you have gathered enough research and data to incorporate into your diet or exercise plan. Don’t neglect the fine details when crafting your action plans. If you are creating a healthy meal plan, be specific with each meal or recipe to be prepared at breakfast, lunch and dinner. For workout programs, try to name each exercise and be definitive when it comes to timed intervals or duration of every workout. Knowing the minute details of your plan helps you assert more control and creates greater awareness for your plan.      


How do I start a diet and exercise program?

To start a diet and exercise program, you need to decide for yourself why you want to enter into such a program and commit yourself to it. There is a wide variety of diet plans and workout programs out there, but choosing one that best suits your needs and body is what matters.

Is it 80% diet and 20% exercise?

According to the Health Genesis Club, the 80% nutrition and 20% exercise rule is a good model to follow if your goal is to lose weight. Being intentional about both diet and exercise is key to sustaining a healthy and fit lifestyle.

How can I lose weight with diet and exercise?

Weight loss can be achieved through careful planning and preparation when it comes to your diet and exercise. A good way to start is by consulting a doctor, nutritionist or health professional about your options. You have to take into consideration a diet or exercise program that is designed to address your needs and lifestyle.

Diet and exercise must always go hand-in-hand. One without the other often does not generate optimum results. Curate and personalize your own plan with the use of a sample template! Browse the selection above and choose any printable template now!