In order to have lasting results there are only two ingredients that are required. An effect strategy and a consistent adherence to that strategy. There is nothing else that is required. Most health and fitness programs focus solely on the strategy and have virtually zero focus on the adherence. Or at least have very little success with achieving long term adherence.
In the past, the methods for achieving client adherence centered around the no pain no gain dictator approach.. I am the expert, you are the client, you do as I say or else you will not achieve results. If you don't do what I ask you to do outside of our sessions then tough luck, I can not help you.
But the industry has smartened up (a bit) and has now shifted their focus on using technology and software automation in order to remind the end user to think a certain way. This in turn produces a different behavior like drinking more water or eating more vegetables. You receive an automated email, you read it, you think differently, you take a different action, you get a different result.
However, there is little to no face to face human connection and no education around the actual science behind being used on you.
Companies like NOOM and Precision Nutrition are starting to break through as the leading online platform to help you improve your health. Even Weight Watchers and Jenny Craig have had to change their business models and programs to this similar model in order to stay relevant.
The problem with both the old school dictator approach and the new age email behavior automation approach is that neither of them actually educate the end user on how the whole process of changing one's behavior actually works. This is important, because if you can learn for yourself why you actually do the things that you do then you can eventually condition yourself to take the right actions and behaviors with having to be dependent on any external coach, program or technology.
A.K.A no more short term quick fixes and diets.
This is the reason why people have a hard time maintaining their results as soon as their 6 week quick fix program is over. They never addressed or learned the root cause of behavior change.
Pair this together with the correct strategy (veggies, water, exercise, walking etc.) and you now have a recipe for long term permanent change.