I'm not stepping on my scale again for one month. My workouts have been hampered by a hip injury. I have been traveling a good bit and splurging on foods I can't get back home (I'm looking at you, Chicago deep dish pizza). My meals are mostly good, and I stay within my calorie limit most days. Nevertheless, I have been fighting through a weight-loss plateau for a few weeks, and I'm tired of not seeing the number budge.
Fortunately, a weight-loss plateau is actually a sign of great progress. As your weight decreases, so does your body's ability to burn calories, even while at rest. In other words, the smaller you become, the fewer calories you burn at rest. The fewer calories you burn at rest, the slower your weight loss will become.
A weight-loss plateau is also disappointing. It can even be really, really darn aggravating, too. That's why I'm not going anywhere near my scale until May 1. During these next four weeks, I'm focusing on my body: how it feels, how I'm performing, and how I'm caring for it. After all, the number on the scale doesn't tell the whole story. I feel--and look--better than I have in a while. And that's the type of victory I want to focus on while I'm on a scale vacation.
Here's how I'm going to get through this weight-loss plateau without losing my drive (and without throwing my scale through the window). Maybe these ideas can help if you find yourself in a plateau, too:
- Relax. This is normal. As mentioned, a plateau is a good thing. Don't freak out. And whatever you do, don't give up. - Reassess. The number on the scale isn't the whole story. How do you feel? How do your clothes fit? How long can you sustain exercise? How quickly do you recover after your workout? The scale isn't the only place you'll see improvements. - Rededicate Yourself. Do you remember when you first started, how closely you stuck to your daily calorie allotment and exercise goals? It's time to do that again. When success keeps pouring in, it's easy to feel confident and get into a routine. Unfortunately, your body knows how to preserve its energy in that routine. Now it's time to find a new gym routine, something that's more challenging than what you've been doing. And get back to closely tracking your calories for a few days, just to remind yourself how it all balances. - See More: Stay motivated when you've hit a weight-loss plateau.
Tell me: What tips do you have for surviving a weight-loss plateau? Share your suggestions in the comments below.