If you’ve ever struggled with weight loss, you may know that while many diets work initially, over time you’re likely to experience a slowdown in results–a weight-loss plateau-despite following the same exercise/healthy eating tactics. Why does this occur?
First off, overly strict diets can decrease your metabolism, curtailing fat loss. Also, your body requires fewer daily calories with each pound lost and you may not be adjusting accordingly. Over consuming carbs can also obstruct your slim down goals. But take heart, with a few key adjustments, you can outsmart your weight loss plateau:
Jumpstart with Breakfast
A nutritious morning meal gives your metabolism a significant boost that lasts for hours. As a consistent, daily breakfast ritual, a low–calorie, nourishing, energizing whey protein shake is a phenomenal weight loss tool. Add some healthy fat and green superfoods, and you have an incomparable breakfast to keep energy up, cravings down, and metabolism active. Nothing tops this daily shake if you mean business about healthy weight loss, though high–quality whey protein bars are great secondary options.
Sneaking in the carbs can impede your results, especially sweets and refined, white flour–based items which promote blood sugar instability with minimal nutritive value. Even whole grains should be moderated, since many carb sensitive people tend to overeat any carbs–as opposed to highly–satiating lean protein, healthy fats, and low-glycemic fruits and veggies. Carbs are often hidden in processed foods/condiments, as well as beer and wine. Due to its caloric density–and because it’s processed first while other calories are stored as fat–alcohol is a common culprit in weight loss stalls.
Eat light, Eat Often
To resume your weight loss and burn fat successfully, be sure you’re fueling your body with consistent, metabolism–boosting mini–meals-ideally 4–6 per day–starting with your morning shake. Be sure to eat at regular intervals, at least every three hours to stay energized and keep your blood sugar stable. Keep healthy, portable snacks on hand, like whey protein bars, veggies and hummus, fresh nuts and seeds, peanuts, etc. Between meals and snacks, consume at least half your bodyweight in ounces of water per day. You’ll be amazed at the difference this makes in your results.
Vary Your Calories
When your weight loss is at a standstill, alternate your calories slightly each day to prevent your body from adapting to a set intake, which can stall your results. For example, if you consume 1,200 calories one day, scale back to 1,000 the next. Then on the third day, add a 100 calorie snack for a total of 1,100 calories. Your body must adjust to this altered caloric intake, which stimulates weight loss. Healthy 100–calorie snacks include half a whey protein bar, 1.5 sticks of string cheese, a mini–whey protein shake, a half cup of edamame, 10 almonds, etc.
Recalibrate Your Exercise Regimen
As you probably know, exercise is one of the most effective ways to boost your metabolism. Even a 30–minute daily walk helps, though weight training is by far the most effective path to building lean muscle, helping your body more effectively burn calories and fat, even at rest. Exercise variety is a proven plateau–busting strategy. If you’ve been cycling, take a run or hike. If you swim, try a yoga class. Increase your weights as needed. Alter both your time and intensity as well. Above all, avoid fitness complacency.
Voila! You now have some highly effective tools to help you “break on through to the other side” to quote Jim Morrison. Here’s to a trim, healthy body–for life.