You’ve worked hard to toss aside some extra pounds, but no matter what you do, those last few Ls and Bs just won’t disappear. Seeing those numbers on the scale stay stagnant can be frustrating, but here’s the thing about weight-loss plateaus: they mean you’re doing something right!
There are plenty of reasons for a downturn in weight loss. Most commonly, this slump suggests that your body has grown accustomed to its new weight, which means a slower metabolism. Your new body doesn’t need as many calories to function at peak performance—a 220-pound man who loses 10% of his weight could require approximately 500 fewer calories per day, for example—so a plateau is nearly impossible to avoid.
But that doesn’t mean it can’t be conquered! Here are a few tips to help you get over that weight-loss hump we all despise with the fury of a billion suns.
Tip #1: Adjust Your Caloric Intake
The first thing to assess after you notice a plateau is your consumption.
On average, women require about 2000 calories to maintain their weight, while men even out around 2700 calories, give or take. If you’re following the same plan on day 90 as you did on week 1, you may need to eat less. Best yet, get a complete metabolic test to see what your resting metabolism is; this will allow you to adjust your caloric intake scientifically rather than just testing new diets and hoping to see results.
But there’s a benefit to cheating on your diet, too! If you take a few days off and indulge in carb-heavy meals, your body will ramp up its leptin production—leptin tells your brain when you’re hungry—and trick your body into thinking it has additional carbohydrates (and calories) to burn off. So, grab a slice of pizza and pig out over a weekend, then start exercising again on Monday.
If you’d like to “freehand” your target calories, try using an online calorie calculator like this one. When in doubt, ask one of our fitness trainers near Kansas City for recommendations.
Tip #2: Snack Throughout the Day
Again, your metabolism holds a lion’s share of the blame when it comes to your weight-loss struggles. One way to ensure you’re not hitting a wall is to snack regularly—and not just on almonds! When you skip meals or eat too infrequently, you’re not only informing your body to reserve calories, but you’re also risking a drop in blood glucose levels. Try nibbling on a healthy mix of food rich in the following: protein (nuts), fiber (veggies), carbs (fruits), and fats (dairy). You’ll feel more satiated and less at risk of overeating at dinner.
A great option is to keep a bag of mixed granola, nuts, dried fruits, and yogurt-covered raisins around your desk.
Tip #3: Change Your Bedtime
If water is a “1(a)” on a human’s priority list, sleep is “1(b).”
Over 33% of Americans aren’t getting enough shut-eye, and if you’re one of those people, you’re probably suffering from cognitive or physical problems—or both. Medical professionals and sleep scientists believe that you should be getting at least 7 hours of sleep to function normally and keep your metabolism on its toes. Some studies even show that consistently sleeping for 6 hours or less can reduce fat loss by up to 55%!
Count more sheep by moving your bedtime back an hour, and you may well be counting more pounds coming off the scale, too!
Tip #4: Take a Break
Sometimes your body needs to recharge itself, even if your target weight hasn’t yet been reached. You may have a weight-loss number in mind, but your body doesn’t understand math, silly. If you’ve been working yourself to the brink of exhaustion, consider rewarding yourself with an extra day of rest and relaxation. Go to the spa. Get a haircut. Splurge at the casino. Do something fun, and get back to the grindstone once your psyche has been flushed clean.
On your first day back to our Olathe gym, start off gingerly; move down to lighter weights and do a few more reps, cut back on treadmill distance and instead focus on time spent, and rest in between any exercises.
Tip #5: Head to the Doctor
Should your weight-loss plateau become insurmountable, consider talking to your general practitioner about hormone imbalances. Various genetic disorders can account for your troubles with losing weight, including hypothyroidism, diabetes, polycystic ovarian syndrome, testosterone deficiency, and other endocrinological diseases. While rare, these health problems can hinder your ability to shed and keep off those unwanted LBs.
Become a Member of SunPoint Fitness
Your weight-loss goals are not to be undertaken alone. As one of the most trusted boutique gyms near Kansas City, SunPoint Fitness has personal trainers available to get you results. Whether you’re new to the game or looking to plow through the wall stubbornly built by Your Metabolism®, allow us to pull you across the finish line. Call our Olathe personal trainers at 913-945-1661 to set up an appointment, and feel free to swing into our Olathe gym morning, noon, or night.
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