Most people that continuously do the same things day in and day out whether it be the same type of workout, the same meals, the same routine, the same repetitions and the same resistance will eventually become accustomed to that routine and not make any more advances. More is not always better though so don’t be stressing that you need to do MORE. Plateaus are a normal part of weight loss and training and it is how you learn and react to them that will matter in the long run.
Why did you reach this plateau? Let’s take a look at some valid reasons for your stall.
1. You’ve slacked on keeping track.
How often do you go about your day and forget to log in your food in your MyFitness Pal until the very end of the day? Recently I’ve done it more times than I can count. Stay consistent with keeping track of exactly what you’re eating and when you’re eating. I know it’s a pain in the butt sometimes but the more you are aware of how much you are eating, the better success you’ll have to stay on track. Look back at your food and activity records. Make sure you haven’t loosened the rules, letting yourself get by with larger portions or less exercise.
2. Are you drinking enough water?
Lots of people don’t realize the true importance of drinking enough water everyday and how it can impact both your health and your weight loss efforts. According to experts in a recent study, drinking just 2 cups of water, which is smaller than the size of a bottled soda, before meals helped dieters lose an extra five pounds yearly and help you maintain your weight loss. Additionally drinking the right amount of water daily can actually speed up your metabolic rate and help to curb overeating when your body confused hunger and thirst. But how much water is enough?
Here is how to calculate how much water you should drink a day for both health and weight loss benefits.
- Your weight: The first step to knowing how much water to drink everyday is to know your weight. The amount of water a person should drink varies on their weight, which makes sense because the more someone weighs the more water they need to drink. A two hundred pound man and 100 pound woman require different amounts of water every day.
- Multiply by 2/3: Next you want to multiple your weight by 2/3 (or 67%) to determine how much water to drink daily. For example, if you weighed 175 pounds you would multiple that by 2/3 and learn you should be drinking about 117 ounces of water every day.
- Activity Level: Finally you will want to adjust that number based on how often you work out, since you are expelling water when you sweat. You should add 12 ounces of water to your daily total for every 30 minutes that you work out. So if you work out for 45 minutes daily, you would add 18 ounces of water to your daily intake.
3. Cut back on your calories or maybe you’re not eating enough?
Going full tilt at the gym without eating enough could be disasterous. It can even make you go backwards. Your muscles are fighting back on you and quitting on you because they’re not getting proper recovery time or enough energy for them to rebuild to become leaner… If you don’t eat enough, your body will hold onto fat or even regain fat in the effort to protect your heart and body organs with a supply of needed calories.
4. Are You Trying to Lose Vanity Pounds?
If you’re only trying to lose five, 10, or 15 pounds, you’re in a different place than someone who wants to drop triple digits. You’re not obese, you just want to look better — and this is what I refer to as vanity pounds. The human body doesn’t want to be carrying around excess weight, so it will respond to diet and exercise When you have a smaller amount of weight to lose, your body is already healthy, which makes it tougher to lose weight. What people in this situation often do is cut more calories or increase their time at the gym, but this method will not work. All that does is slow your metabolism down and send your body into starvation mode. The best quick fix is to give your body a little more food so it feels secure. Varying your calorie intake is my best advice for keeping your body from plateauing. For the next three days, vary your calorie intake between 1,800 and 2,400 calories. I know this may sound crazy, but trust me — I know what I’m doing. After three days, drop back down to your usual calorie allowance. Remember, never allow your daily calorie allowance to fall below 1,200 if you are a woman and 1,500 if you are a man. Falling below these daily allowances can do real damage to your metabolism and result in excessive loss of lean muscle tissue.
5. You’re not getting enough sleep.
One of the most overlooked things that can cause a plateau is not getting at least 7 to 8 hours of sleep a night. Not getting enough sleep puts you in a state of stress. which can directly lead to belly fat. Take a week off your workouts and let your sleep patterns recover.
6. Switch things up!
If you’ve taken the same old supplement day in and day out and you’re finding that you’re not getting that burst of energy anymore or it’s not controlling your appetite like it once did, switch it up for a week or two. Either stop taking supplements all together or switch to a different one or even do a Detox or cleanse for a week and start fresh.
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Toni Sweeney is a Triple Certified Ketogenic Diet and Primal Health Coach and weight loss expert who personally lost 80 pounds while making a total lifestyle change. The founder of TS Transformations, her formulas and plans has helped thousands of women lose weight and keep it off forever.