So your weight loss has stalled and you're not sure what to do. Welcome to the reality of almost every woman I know. We lose weight, we do great, but then it stops. We freak out, get depressed, and start eating crap food again. So then we gain the weight back, and figure “what's the point?” — okay, maybe it's just me? But if you've lost weight, plateaued, and/or gained weight back, you know what I'm talking about. While it may be tempting to cut corners (and calories) to get through your plateau, there's no need. Let's talk about ways to break through a weight loss plateau… without starving your body!
I've lost 50 pounds. Here's how.
7 Ways to Break Through a Weight Loss Plateau
Real quick, before we talk about ways to overcome a weight loss plateau, I want to make sure you understand that weight loss is a mindset thing. STAY POSITIVE! It's a marathon, not a sprint. You've gotta be in it to win it or it's not going to work. Everyone's body is DIFFERENT so what works for one person won't necessarily work as well for the next. But if you're seeing huge numbers from your friends and your numbers are small, you may get discouraged. Try your hardest NOT to get discouraged. Just keep pushing through. It will work if you work it! Weight Watchers is perfect for literally everyone, and I have a free support group you're welcome to join!
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Drink more water.
I'm known as the “water police” in the Weight Watchers group because “how much water are you drinking?” is the first thing I ask when someone says they've hit a brick wall with weight loss. Usually, they respond “a ton!” but when it comes down to it and I have them track ounces, they're way off. It can FEEL like we are drinking a “ton” of water when we really aren't, especially when we are used to Starbucks and soda instead.
While Weight Watchers says 64 ounces of “fluids” a day is sufficient (including juice/coffee/etc), I disagree. Ask your doctor before making huge changes, but mine says to drink half of my body weight in ounces of water each day. Coffee, tea, diet soda, and juice do NOT count. Water is water. Everything else is everything else.
If you set a goal of drinking half your body weight in ounces of water each day, get this cup. I have to refill it 8 times, which isn't a lot in the grand scheme of things. I usually only drink about 5 a day (so 100oz) but the goal is 8.
Increase fiber intake.
Fiber and water have to work together. If you up your fiber intake but don't drink enough water, you'll get constipated. If you're constipated, you won't lose weight!
Watch your carbs.
I don't believe in low carb diets. Let me say it again:
I don't believe in low carb diets.
I'm not saying you should decrease your carb intake drastically when I say “watch your carbs”. I'm simply saying, keep an eye on your carb intake if you hit a plateau. Perhaps it's too high and you should cut back a bit.
Cut back on sodium.
I would say at least 50% of the time, when someone says they “can't” lose weight, it's because their sodium intake is through the roof and they aren't drinking enough water. Combining those two things is a disaster. If you're struggling to lose weight, start tracking your sodium. Are you salting your foods? If not, there are other places to look – spices and seasonings (like garlic salt), pre-made frozen dinners like Lean Cuisines, or even eating out.
Check your calories.
Are you eating too few calories? Too many calories? While we don't count calories on Weight Watchers, if your weight loss stalls, it's a good option to try for a few days. You need to make sure you're fueling your body. If you notice you're only eating 1,000 calories, that could definitely be a cause for a weight loss plateau. Less calories does not mean you will lose weight faster; if you do, it won't be in a healthy way and it will come back. Nourish your body.
Increase your protein.
I was a vegetarian for several years, so I'm not going to go on a rant about people “not getting enough protein”. The truth is, you're probably eating enough protein to sustain your body – without even thinking about it. However, if your weight loss has slowed down or stopped, you may need to increase your lean protein intake. On the Weight Watchers Freestyle program, there are over 200 0 point foods. Most are lean proteins that will fill you up for very few calories. The list includes (but is not limited to) chicken, fish, veggies, beans, and tofu. The key to balancing protein intake is eating until you're full, but not stuffed. Eating lean proteins like chicken and fish will fill you up faster than if you're eating crap food like chips and Hot Pockets. You'll stay full longer, and will consume less calories (and points).
It doesn't take a rocket scientist to know you should be moving your body every single day. Ideally, I say you should be working out 3-5 times a week, 30-60 minutes each time. This all depends on your ability obviously, but barring any health problems or injuries, I see nothing wrong with taking a brisk walk 5 days a week for an hour. Without OrangeTheory Fitness, I wouldn't have lost much weight at all. When I work out, I eat better for the rest of the day, which helps even MORE with weight loss!
If you've been walking but aren't losing weight, try jogging or try something like the elliptical, bike, etc. Mix it up. Add weights. Make it fun.
Stop being a slave to the scale.
I weigh myself once a week, if that. For a long time, though, I was a slave to the scale. I weighed every day, sometimes a few times a day, and it was never good. I always got angry or depressed, and then I'd eat more… and weigh more. It was a horribly vicious cycle that I'm so proud to have finally beat.
I've been binge watching Grey's Anatomy for hours (and hours) at a time after the kids go to sleep. I noticed my weight loss wasn't what I expected it to be one week and sure enough, once I started going to sleep earlier, the weight started coming off again. Sleep is an important part of your weight loss journey.
Let me know what else you do to get through a weight loss plateau by leaving a comment below! Another great way is to join a support group or find a buddy.
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