I have a client who has been doing the “Today’s the Day” 7-Week Fitness Plan and doing very well on it. She has lost 17 pounds in 4 weeks. She obviously is very motivated and determined to reach her goal weight. She has 15 pounds to go to reach that goal. This week she called me, concerned that she didn’t lose any weight and felt she had reached a plateau.
This is very common. As you progress in your weight loss, it’s natural for your body to need a week or two to readjust to the “new you” so to speak! She’s already more than halfway to her goal. If you are in a similar situation – don’t get discouraged. It’s actually a good sign. It means you have caused a measurable change in your body composition and you just need to re-evaluate what you are doing.
Before we talk about some things you might consider – be sure you are truly still sticking with whatever plan you are on. Sometime you get so used to it that you begin slipping off and don’t realize it could affect your results. You know what I mean – you might eat more than before or skip a few sessions of exercise or even slack off on drinking adequate water. Any or all of those can certainly cause you to stop losing weight.
If you are a woman, where you are in your cycle and of course if you are in perimenopause or menopause, that can also have an effect. An unusually stressful time, several days without adequate sleep – all these can be factors. So the first thing to do is honestly assess your situation. Once you are certain you haven’t slipped in your eating plan or exercise and eliminated the other possible factors – here are a few things you can consider:
My first suggestion is if you stopped keeping a food log – go back and keep one for at least 3 days. This alone can tell you whether you are eating too much – or too little.
Recalculate your caloric needs for your new weight and factor in a 10% deficit for weight loss. Make sure you do not go below 1000-1200 calories though.
If you have been eating 3 meals and a snack – break it down further. Split one meal up and make 4 smaller meals and a snack.
Make breakfast your biggest meal with lunch smaller and dinner your lightest meal.
Try carb cycling for a few days. Eat a low carb plan on day one (protein, vegetables, 2 pieces of fruit and a healthy complex carb like whole grain bread, oatmeal or sweet potato only at either breakfast or lunch; a no carb day (protein and vegetables (non-starchy) and 2 pieces of fruit on day two; then day three is a high carb day with healthy complex carbs at breakfast and lunch. This can just be enough to push your body back into high gear.
Switch up your exercise routine. Add some intervals of higher intensity; change the order in which you perform your exercises; vary the number of reps. Don’t allow your body to get too used to what you do. It’s best to change your routine at least every 3 weeks – or more often.
Try these suggestions and let me know how you do.