Do you feel like you're doing everything "right" but still not getting the desired results? Training and weight loss plateaus can be a huge hit to your motivation. Our bodies go from losing weight consistently to getting stuck at a point. We call this "The Plateau". It happens to all of us. When you first start something new, you make quick progress and see big changes. But after a few months, the results you get from your effort decreases. When we hit that dip where our hard work seems like it goes unrewarded, it's easy to give up. Remember, hitting a weight plateau isn't uncommon. Don't give up. Whether you've stalled in your weight loss journey, strength training, or any other fitness benchmark, we'll tell you what can be done to tip the scales in your favor.
Are you really physically active? Here's one overlooked area to consider:
How N.E.A.T are you?
Non-exercise-activity Thermogenesis (NEAT) is one of the body's major calorie burners. Staying active during the day will go a long way towards accelerating your results. How much are you moving during the day? (Not including your workouts, of course). The National Academy of Sports Medicine calls this the "low-hanging fruit" of keeping your metabolism fired up. All you have to do is find simple ways to sneak activity into your day:
- Stand instead of sit.
- Get up every 30-60 minutes to stretch or take a brief walk, even if it's just to the printer.
- Find ways to add activity to your evenings â?“ could be as easy as 15 extra mins of chores. Turn on some music to make them more fun. Have a mini dance party!
These sound really simple, but when all else fails, it's always super-helpful to go back to the basics.
Adjust your diet
If you're not consuming enough protein on a daily basis, your body will break down its own protein in the form of muscle mass. Make sure you are getting enough protein. It is a crucial part of muscle growth, maintenance, and recovery. Adding more fiber-rich foods to your diet can help in breaking through your plateau. Soluble fiber slows down the movement of foods through your digestive tract, making you feel full for longer.
Keep a food diary like you used to!
Remember when you first started the fitness journey? Was there a time when you may have been logging every single bite and measuring portions to make sure you knew exactly what you were eating on a daily basis? Start doing it again. Logging your meals again can help pin down some reasons for the stagnant weight.
Keep your metabolism up
For every 10% of body weight you lose, you should be consuming about 20% fewer calories in order to keep losing weight. It's essential to keep metabolic declines minimal, so while you do want to burn fat, you'll also want to work on building muscle.
Check for complacency
Becoming complacent with your exercise routine may also lead to plateaus. Your body may adapt to the activity you have been doing, and you won't see as many changes as you originally anticipated. Small changes in the time spent exercising, the intensity of the activity or the type of activity can help break the plateau.
Relax & Rest
To get through a plateau that has been caused by too much training, you need to give your body time to recover from your intense schedule. Rest is an important part of a healthy lifestyle that needs to be prioritized too. Take 6-7 days off. Get 7-8 hours of restful sleep every night coupled with nutritious food.
If you hit a plateau for a month or two, stay patient before you try cutting calories, adding more exercises, or both. As long as you don't give up, you can reach your fitness goals. If you realize you're not as active as you once were, get up and get moving! So what if the scale isn't moving? Are you looking better? Are you feeling better? Do your clothes fit better? That is progress. The goal is to consistently prove to ourselves that we are moving one step closer towards our goal.
Keep your training fresh
Once our body becomes accustomed to the stress placed upon it, it needs a periodic jolt to the system to get things back on track. Strength training requires constant adjustment in order to challenge muscles and sustain growth. If you keep with the same program without mixing it up, you will definitely find yourself hitting a plateau. You'd be surprised how quickly a muscle group adapts to a specific exercise. Take the help of a personal fitness trainer who can help you through this.
We've gone through some of the main strategies to help you break through your weight loss plateau, but there are many other things that may help as well:
- Spread your protein intake throughout the day
- Cut back on carbohydrates
- Avoid alcohol
- Eating vegetables at every meal
- Stay hydrated
- Reduce your sodium
- Get proper sleep
- Manage your stress
Train with the best fitness coaches at Stronglife
Just like how varying the intensity of an exercise can help you overcome a plateau, varying your exercise routine is just as important. Try the best personal training in Australia. Our fitness coaches in Point Cook are experts who will be happy to help you reach your weight loss goals. Do something now that your future self will thank you for! Get in touch with the best fitness trainers at Point Cook today. If you have room for improvement? or if feel like you get enough? please comment and let us know.