You’ve been working out and eating right but all of a sudden hit a weight-loss plateau. Despite your continued efforts, the scale doesn’t seem to want to budge no matter what you do.
Now is not the time to get discouraged. It’s actually pretty normal for weight loss to slow or even stall as you inch closer and closer toward your goal weight. But by understanding what’s causing you to plateau and taking appropriate action, you can help prevent backsliding and continue forging ahead with your new healthy lifestyle. Below we will lay out some great tips to help get you back on track in no time.
What causes a weight-loss plateau?
For those on a consistent weight-loss journey, getting stuck on a plateau is more common than you may think. It actually happens to almost everyone. No matter how frustrating it is, the reality is that even the most well-planned efforts for weight loss can come to a screeching halt. Here’s a breakdown of how it happens:
Early on in your weight loss adventure, a fairly rapid drop in pounds is normal – mostly because you cut calories and the body gets replacement energy from stored glycogen (a type of carbohydrate found in your liver and muscles). Since glycogen is partly made of water, it releases water when it’s burned, resulting in the subsequent spike in weight loss. As you continue losing weight, you start to lose some muscle along with fat in the process. Muscle mass helps keep your metabolism running at a steady pace. So obviously, when you lose muscle, your metabolism slows. That results is you burning fewer calories than when you were at a heavier weight.
So what do I do to overcome this weight-loss plateau?
First of all, don’t lose hope. If you find yourself camped out on a plateau, chances are you’ve reaches as far as you’re going to go with your current approach. Staying that same course will help you maintain your current results (which you should still be proud of), but you’re going to have to change things up a bit if you want to lose more weight. Here are a few helpful tips to get you started.
5 tips for overcoming your weight-loss plateau in the Louisville area:
- Reassess your current habits. To put it simply, if what you’re doing now isn’t getting you to where you want to be, then it’s time to make a new move. Keep a record of your overall activity and food intake, then see if you could be doing anything different. Doing this will also help ensure you haven’t loosened the rules along the way.
- Cut a few more calories from your diet. There’s not much science to losing weight. You merely need to be burning more calories than you’re taking in. You may have hit a plateau simply because you’ve reached an equilibrium of calories consumed compared to calories being burned. What this means is that you’ll need to adjust your caloric intake to continue losing more weight.
- Step up your cardio. A good rule of thumb when you’ve reached a plateau is to shoot for 90 minutes of cardio most days of the week if you can manage it. Also, try to change up your movement patterns so you don’t get complacent and lose interest in your workouts.
- Don’t forget to incorporate strength training. The more muscle mass you have, the higher your metabolic rate. The higher your metabolic rate, the more calories you burn, even at rest! This doesn’t mean you have to aspire for hulk-like muscles. Even a little can go a long way. If you’re unsure of how to incorporate strength training safely into your workout routine, you may want to consider consulting with a personal trainer or health professional.
- Check your portion sizes and don’t skimp on protein. You can’t really pile the plate and expect to lose weight. Assess your meals and make sure you’re not adding a little extra here or there as a reward for your efforts thus far. Also, you’ll want to make sure you’re getting ample protein as you incorporate more strength training to build the muscle you need to burn more calories.
No matter what, just don’t give up and revert to old habits. It’s much easier than not to gain weight again following the halt of a healthier journey. Be sure to celebrate your successes along the way and continue your efforts in living the best life possible. Your future self will thank you for it.
If you need any help in overcoming your weight-loss plateau in Louisville, we’re here to help!
If you’re doing everything you know to do yet you still feel stuck on your weight-loss plateau, perhaps it’s time to reach out for a little help. Our health and wellness team at Vibrant Med are standing by, ready to offer all the tools you need to conquer your goals. Just give us a call at 502-618-0995 and find out all the ways we can help!