Have you ever lost a little weight, hit a plateau, and then gave up?
Plateaus can be so FRUSTRATING!!!
But there IS an upside!
#1 It’s a Jumbotron sign saying you’ve made PROGRESS.
We’re always so busy focusing on what’s ahead…what’s next…
Try looking at a plateau as PAUSE and not a stop.
Take a moment to survey the landscape and all that road behind you!
If you unexpectedly hit traffic, would you abandon your car and walk home?
Of course not. You’d wait it out, knowing eventually you’ll get to your destination.
The same is true for your weight-loss. The PLATEAU is just a little traffic jam.
Short-term plateaus aren’t anything to worry about.
HOWEVER. If there is no change over a SIGNIFICANT period of time…
There isn’t a calorie deficit.
(And you will not lose fat without one).
You may be underestimating your caloric intake, overestimating your caloric output, or engaging in a little (unknowing) self-sabotage…
Your plateau is your warning light – that something needs maintenance.
Every time I plateaued I thought there couldn’t possibly be anymore I could do…
But time and time again I uncovered a culprit, and once resolved, weight-loss resumed.
A big SHOCKER for me involved squash.
I started eating squash as a snack...
Partly because I liked it, but mostly because MFP told me it was only 30 calories.
As my plateau continued for weeks and weeks, I started closely examining everything I was doing in search of an answer. Eventually I discovered my squash was really 80 calories a cup (MFP was wrong)! I had been underestimating my calories unknowingly!
Once I started using the correct information and adjusted accordingly, I lost weight.
Another surprise was with my FitBit. It was always very generous in telling me how many calories I burned (but it was an overestimation).
For example, my friend and I went to a party. And while we WERE dancing, we were also standing around talking a lot, too. There’s no way I burned 980 calories. I WISH.
Technology is supposed to make our lives easier… help us reach our goals faster…
But technology is not without its downfalls and quirks.
Like the scale, for example.
The scale is the easiest way to track progress but also the least RELIABLE.
It can’t tell you what your muscle-to-body-fat proportion is…
Or if you’re hydrated or dehydrated...
Yet 1lb of muscle in lieu of 1lb of fat can make ALL the difference in appearance…
And we can ALL agree we look way better when we’re NOT bloated, right?! ;)
SO even if you HAVE reached a PLATEAU, make sure it’s a real one.
Don’t trust the scale completely.
Take pictures in a swimsuit, assess how your clothes fit, use tape measurers, etc.
BUT if the plateau continues for more than a few weeks…
It’s time to make a change…
Change to the meal plans and take all the guesswork out.
P.S. The important aspect of “slow” weight loss is that you’re PERMANENTLY changing your lifestyle and creating long-term success. (It’s not about dieting. It’s about lifestyle changes!)
Chances are you slowly and steadily gained, and that’s exactly how you’ll lose it too.