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Get Off That Weight Loss Plateau in 3 Simple Steps
Posted on: 19 May 2017 by Misty Jhones
When you work hard to get in regular exercise and maintain a healthy diet,
you’re rewarded with a more satisfying result on the scale as well as a feeling of comfort in your own skin. But there might come a time when you no longer see results on the scale, which can be discouraging if you’ve been faithful to your healthy, calorie-conscious diet and have been exercising regularly. Sad as it is to say, it sounds like you’ve reached the dreaded weight-loss plateau.
Slowing down in weight loss is normal and should not lead you to put an end to your weight loss goals. Everyone who’s lost weight has been in this exact same situation. Regardless of how common this is, the surprise and shock when it happens is still hard to bear. No matter how well planned your weight loss efforts are, you can still experience a stall. The journey to an ideal weight is fraught with high highs, low lows, and of course the dreaded plateau. But like they say, no condition has to be permanent.
What is a Weight Loss Plateau Anyway?
A weight loss plateau is a period of time during your weight loss journey where your body weight remains at the same level. It’s normal to experience rapid weight loss in the first few weeks of a weight loss regime. This happens because your new low-calorie diet causes the body to get the energy needed by releasing glycogen stored in the muscles and liver. When glycogen is burned for energy, there is a significant but temporary drop in weight. Weight loss plateauing is when steady results significantly slow down or stop altogether.
How Does One Plateau in Weight Loss
A weight loss plateau is never sudden—it’s a build-up of the effects of decisions during a fitness journey.
Some of these include:
- Failure to portion food properly
- Over-treating yourself on those “cheat days”
- Not being as active as you need to be
- Failure to fuel up with the right meals/snacks before and after a workout
- Inconsistency at the gym
- Not giving yourself adequate recovery time
How to Make Progress after a Plateau
After you’ve acquired an understanding of how the weight loss plateau occurs in the first place, the next step is to get back to seeing that weight come off. Here are some useful steps to help you rocket off the weight loss plateau.
Have a sincere appraisal of your calorie intake
Calories are units of energy used by the body to fuel its various functions. They are created from the fats, carbohydrates, and proteins found in our food and drinks. The number of calories you need in a day depends on your body weight, muscle mass, and level of activity. Your calorie intake needs to be reevaluated when you find yourself stuck in a rut, because if you consume more calories than required by your body, they will be stored as fat. Ensure that you are eating a balanced diet, supplementing adequately, and taking in the right amount of calories for your body each day. The bottom line is that you need to be eating less calories than you’re using up in a day.
Avoid allowing calories to sneak up on you
How do calories sneak up on you? You rack up those sneaky calories when you eat more than you think you are eating. This typically happens when you eat out, as many restaurants serve huge portions smothered in sauces, dressings, and spreads. Even your favorite snack of “healthy” chips should be eaten in moderation. The best way to avoid a weight loss stall is to keep record of your food intake, especially with mid-afternoon snacks and sugary drinks. Make sure to avoid mindless eating—every calorie in your daily diet should be accounted for.
Be consistent in your workouts
A combination the first two steps of this list and consistent workouts should be enough to get you off the weight loss plateau. A stall in weight loss tends to make people question their exercise regime, so find a way to shake it up! Changing exercises in your workout doesn’t just help with motivation but also works different muscles in your body. Generally keeping the structure of the workout, however, is important for maintaining consistency.
Focus is also an important factor when working out. Nootropics can aid in concentration and mental endurance, meaning better workouts. They can also help your mood and cognitive ability throughout your daily life. A lot of weight loss is about making good decisions, so a natural mental edge can make all the difference.
Overall, understanding how you got to a weight loss plateau is the first step in breaking through it. Follow through with calorie reevaluation, mindful eating, and consistent workouts and you will get back to dropping that unwanted weight in no time.
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