Instinctively, the body does not like to lose weight. The body tries to balance the energy intake and the energy output. That is the reason why everyone reaches a weight loss plateau at a certain point of their weight loss effort. So when you start losing weight, your weight loss progress will start to slow down until it will eventually stops no matter how much you exercise and limit your food intake.
When you go on a diet and decrease your food intake, your body compensates by lowering its metabolism to conserve energy. The same happens when you exercise regularly. Your body will adjust and will ultimately require fewer calories, thus keeping you from losing weight. But take heart because a weight loss plateau is normal. You can get past it by acquiring the knowledge and skills necessary to recover. Here are 12 effective tips to help you to break a weight loss plateau.
1. Do Not Lower Your Calorie-Intake Too Much
Keep your calorie intake just slightly lower than your maintenance calories so that energy and your metabolism will remain high. Your body needs calories to burn calories and to function.
2. Combine Your Intense Workout with a Healthy Diet
Make sure that your body is nourished with enough nutrients and minerals while you are working out. Your muscles need enough nourishment in order to function and burn fats. If your body does not get the right dietary support, you will end up losing muscles instead of burning more calories.
3. Change Your Workout Regimen Regularly
Do not stick to the same workout for a long period of time because your body will eventually adapt to your activities, making you burn fewer calories. If you notice, you lose more weight at the initial stage of your exercise program and it slows down as you go along. Keep changing your workout regularly before your body adjusts and adapts. Do not get used to your exercise. When you get better, change the workout or increase the intensity so your body will be constantly challenged. For example, if you have become used to running on the treadmill for an hour a day, increase the incline each week or increase the time you spend on the machine.
4. Do Not Over Train
Just like dieting, your body also gets used to your workout program, so do not overdo it, or you will suffer from exercise burnout. Take time to let your body recover. Take a break every few days or does something light every now and then, like yoga, dancing or a stretching routine. When you rest or shift to lighter exercises, lighten your exercise routine and lower the intensity. Increase the intensity as you go along and only when necessary.
5. Understand Your Body and Your Weight Loss Pattern
It is important to understand your body and how it reacts to food and exercise so that you can customize your workout program and plan a nutrition program that will fit you.
6. Join a Sport
Try something new like racquetball or any active sport that can work out different muscle groups with lateral movements. Changing your routine makes things exciting and losing weight more fun.
7. Weight Train
Weight training increases your muscle mass. If you have a greater amount of muscle mass, your body will demand more calories to preserve it. So you will be burning more calories when you work out with weights than just doing regular cardio exercises.
8. Increase Protein Intake
Protein is important in building strong, lean muscles. And just like weight training, protein is important to build strong muscles to burn more fats and calories. Foods rich in protein will also help in cutting your calorie intake.
9. Eat 6 Small Meals a Day
Eating small portions all throughout the day will keep you feeling full and will decrease hunger pangs and cravings. Not like when you deprive yourself, eating small healthy meals a day decreases the urge to overeat.
10. Keep Yourself Hydrated
Staying hydrated is super important, so make sure you’re drinking enough water every day! Water is good for your body. It helps flush out toxins and it will also give you the impression of being full. Sometimes the body mistakes thirst for hunger. SO drink enough water so you won’t be getting wrong signals.
11. Get Enough Rest and Sleep
Getting enough sleep lessens stress and keep your body levels normal making it easier for you to lose weight. It is one good way to re-initiate your weight loss process after hitting a weight loss plateau.
12. Reassess Your Habits and Lifestyle
Take a look at your habits and your lifestyle and check if you have not gone soft and complacent. Make sure that you have not let yourself go and loosened the rules.
Hitting a weight loss plateau is normal and should definitely not be a reason to give up or stop working out. It should become a challenge and an inspiration to work harder.