The truth about weight loss plateaus

It happens to nearly everyone who is successful at losing weight: the plateau. You’ve counted endless calories, worked your butt off (literally) at the gym, and then all of the sudden the progress stops. Or does it?

Science shows that initially, when you set out on your weight loss journey and you cut calories, your body reacts by losing weight because it is not used to surviving on a smaller amount of caloric intake. But, now that you’ve trained your body to live on said calories, it adapts.

A wise thing to do when you encounter the infamous plateau is to reevaluate portion sizes. That doesn’t mean cut your diet into nothing. Just pay close attention to what you’re eating. Most people get a little lazy with their diets after a while of being on them, and it’s really easy to slip and eat a snickers bar, or over indulge on bread while waiting for dinner to be served.

Another wise tip, would be to change up your workout routine. Try taking a few new classes that your gym offers, or get outside and go for a hike now and then. Doing new things works out muscles that aren’t being used in your “go-to” routine, and also helps with the eventually monotonous task of going to the gym.

Although they are rare, identify possible medical reasons for your plateau, when all else fails. Do you have hyperthyroidism? It’s probably best to find out. Focusing on good health should be the main goal.

Yes, weight loss is great if you need it, but being in good health means getting the nutrients that you need, and the rest that you need as well. When frowning at your scale because it hasn’t changed in two weeks, remember that the scale does not reflect the positive changes that are happening within your body.

Most of all, remember the universal law of energy balance. It impossible for you to gain body fat without an excess of calories. You must take in more calories than you burn to put on fat. Likewise, if you’re overweight, it is impossible not to burn fat when you operate at a calorie deficit. If your body has adapted to calorie restriction, then you no longer have a calorie deficit. Thus, the plateau.

Now, the task is to raise your metabolism. Exercising is the ideal way to do this. Burn an extra 500 calories a day by keeping your step count high and lifting weights. This is a great combination. It’s work, but no one who tells the truth ever claimed weight loss is easy.

 

Sources:

How to Get Over the Weight Loss Plateau – Weight Loss – Sharecare. (n.d.). Retrieved from https://www.sharecare.com/health/weight-loss/article/weight-loss-plateau

Plateau! How to get over the flatline – NaturalNews.com. (n.d.). Retrieved from http://www.naturalnews.com/040664_weight_loss_plateau_exercise_healthy_diet.html

Weight Loss Plateaus: How to Get Over the Hump / Fitness. (n.d.). Retrieved from http://www.fitday.com/fitness-articles/fitness/weight-loss-plateaus-how-to-get-over-the-hump.html

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