Have you hit a weight-loss plateau? Expert tips to recharge your diet
- 2 Minutes Read
Anyone in the process of losing weight can hit a weight-loss plateau, so here are some tips on how to deal with it and boost your motivation for continued weight loss.
What tips can help when motivation goes down the drain and the dreaded weight-loss plateau sets in? These obstacles are a fact of life for dieters everywhere. One or more of these 9 tips may help you manage and move on to weight-loss success.
Many people start with highly ambitious plans to lose a lot of weight within a very short period. So how do you determine if you are trying to lose too fast? One clue is when you plug your goals into the MyNetDiary calorie tracker, and it says you have to cut back by 1000 or more calories per day. Or it may say that you need to eat fewer than 1200 calories/day to reach your goal. A very low-calorie level may lead to feelings of deprivation. Perhaps a slightly higher-calorie level is more sustainable.
Re-define your present weight as your new starting weight. Live with it for 2-4 weeks while eating modest food portions and staying active. Then when you're ready, enter your new weight and goals into the tracker.
If you've been eating the same meals, snacks, and beverages throughout your diet, change up your choices while still sticking with your calorie limits and pushing protein.
When you do the same old exercise routine over and over, your muscles become more efficient performing that activity and burn fewer calories. Add different things at different times of day or for longer periods or a higher effort. For example, if you only do the elliptical, switch to a stationary bike, or add a fast walk or jog a couple of times a week.
Fresh or cooked vegetables are filling. So load your meals with more vegetables and fewer grain foods. Aim to fill half your plate with veggies.
If treats have been sneaking back into your food choices, it could contribute to the weight-loss plateau, so one of the best tips is to cut back on treats again. An additional 100-200 calories/day of sugary treats, alcoholic beverages, or snack foods can bring weight loss to a screeching halt.
Research suggests that our obsession with frequent eating to stifle hunger could hinder calorie burning. If your system stays stocked with calories, there's less reason for your body to mobilize fat stores to make up the difference. Eating 3 meals (and maybe a small mid-afternoon snack of high-protein food or fresh vegetables) is usually a good plan.
Aim for balancing meals throughout the day. That way, you burn more of your calories throughout the day rather than sleeping on them.
Reward yourself with something that isn't food. After all, you're at a weight plateau because you did lose weight. New clothing in your new smaller size can motivate you to avoid backsliding. It can also help you feel better about your new weight. Other ideas include a new haircut or color, a trip, new workout clothes, a new class, or anything else related to your life, home, hobbies, or family.
You're not alone if you need to break a weight-loss plateau, and the tips are just a way to nudge the scale again. Don't hesitate to share your frustrations with your weight-loss buddies in MyNetDiary Forum. You may end up crowdsourcing some solutions that help others also move forward to weight-loss success.
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Reviewed and updated on March 16, 2023 by Brenda Braslow
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