Have you hit a weight loss plateau?
When we start out on our latest weight management plan we do so with high hopes and gritty determination and at first it does seem to be working. We lose a few kilos, the tape measure tells us that our measurements are reducing a bit and then we plateau.
The weight loss plateau is a very normal and most of us are probably expecting it (based on past experience with dieting). When it happens to you, you cope reasonably well for the first few days, but those days can turn into weeks and the weight loss has slowed to a trickle.
A weight loss plateau can severely test weight loss motivation and may end up undermining your ability to stick with your weight management plan. Many of us will quit our diets a week or so after reaching a plateau. At this point, our levels of frustration are on the rise and we feel like we are depriving ourselves for no good reason as the needle on the scale will just not move.
Busting through a Weight Loss Plateau
A weight loss plateau is your bodies normal response to a the changes you have made while attempting to lose weight. You have probably reduced your caloric intake, eliminated sugar from your diet and maybe increased your level of physical activity.
At first, this will result in very satisfying levels of weight loss. But as your body adjusts to the new conditions by using the fuel you are consuming much more efficiently. Your metabolism slows down and the weight loss slows or stops.
So what can you do?
First recognise that, even though, the scales do not move as quickly as you would like, your weight management plan is still working in other ways. Get yourself a tape measure and take your measurements once a week. More often than not you are still getting smaller which is probably a better indicator that your are approaching your ideal weight/size than what you weigh.
You might also like to check whether or not you are burning fat. Go to your local Chemist and buy a pack of Ketosis/Glucose Diagnostic strips. The ones I use are “Keto-Diastix Reagent Strips”. Using these strips (as per the instructions) will tell you whether or not you are still burning fat.
If you are burning fat and building muscle at the same time by eating right and adding exercise to your lifestyle it is entirely possible that you will not lose weight for a while. In fact, it is altogether possible that you might gain weight but reduce in size as muscle weighs more than fat.
Second, just wait it out. If you can stick with your eating and exercise plan, even though your weight is not changing the weight loss plateau will end in about three weeks when your body works out that you are not starving and that this is the new normal. Your metabolism will increase again (although maybe not to the same level) and you will begin to lose weight again.
Or if you really don’t want to wait, increase your level of physical activity.