Reaching a fat loss plateau can be one of the most frustrating things you’ll have to deal with. Not only does reaching a plateau put a stop to the fat loss progress, but it can also really wreak havoc on a dieter’s motivation to continue on.
What is a Fat Loss Plateau
A fat loss plateau refers to a point at which the progress of fat loss slows down, or comes to a complete standstill. This usually occurs after an initial period of fat loss. After losing some of the excess fat, the body essentially pulls at the reigns and says wait a minute, let’s just hang on a second.
The reason for fat loss plateaus is that the body is not really designed to want to lose fat. The body is developed to hang on to fat stored during the feast times in order to survive the leaner famine times. The body works efficiently as a machine. When you keep eating and exercising the same amount, even when this is in the right ratio to promote fat loss, after a time the body essentially adjusts itself.
The body’s metabolic processes simply slow down to compensate for low-calorie intake or higher calorie burn. This magically efficient machinery is however incredibly frustrating for those seeking to lose fat/weight. To beat fat loss plateau, you really need to mix things up and surprise your body with a big deal variation.
Ways to beat a fat loss plateau
The following discussed below are some of the necessary ways to beat a fat loss plateau;
Exercise more regularly.
The main point here is that exercise doesn’t have to be strenuous. Extending your daily 30-minute walk to 45 minutes can increase the number of calories you burn by 60 calories! Household chores such as hovering, washing your car and dusting – for up to an hour – can help you to burn an extra 200 calories! Just remember to keep yourself hydrated and don’t push yourself too far if you’re not used to exercising.
Over-training is one of the faults of those seeking to lose fat/weight. Their rationale is that the more you expend your energy, the greater the weight loss. However, when you have reached that point in your training where you have exercised too much, your body knows this. And it will do all it can to preserve its integrity. It will correspondingly decrease the number of calories you will burn throughout the day.
Sufficient rest is an integral part of any workout regimen. This is the time when your body can heal and as a result, new muscles will form. Don’t give in to the misconception that the more you exercise, the more fat you will lose. This will only become possible if you give your body ample time for recovery. Doing this will help you stave off the immobilizing effects of a fat loss plateau.
Modify your diet.
Use a method called the zig-zag approach. It has been proven that keeping your body guessing with regards to your calorie intake will effectively stop you from reaching a fat loss plateau in the first place. Whether you want to cut your diet down by another 100 calories or reduce your fat/carbohydrate intake, swapping your diet helps to stop your body compensating for the reduced calorie intake by storing the food that you do eat.
A simple modification to your diet can make a huge difference to ‘tipping you over the scale’ and restarting your weight loss. Follow a diet of 40% protein, 30% carbohydrates, and 30% fat to achieve this.
Don’t restrict too many calories.
The most common partner of exercise is diet. However, while you are training, it is best not to lower your caloric intake too much since your body will respond by slowing down metabolism. When your metabolic rate slows down, you won’t lose as much fat as you would like to.
Calories are needed by your body to burn more calories. Therefore, don’t restrict yourself severely but cut only a few from your maintenance caloric intake. You will still keep your metabolism humming and as a result, burn more weight. This will prevent you from experiencing a fat loss plateau.
Ignore the scales.
It is sometimes easy to think you have reached a fat loss plateau when in actual fact your body might just be converting fat into muscle. Muscle weighs more than fat, so your scales can look misleading. It is for this reason that you should try and measure your diet’s success based on the fit of your clothes. It is quite possible that even though you are not losing weight, you are toning up due to exercise and losing inches instead.
Join a slimming group.
It is easy over time to become less motivated towards your diet without realizing it. The best trick to boosting your motivation levels is to join a slimming group. Watching others around you shed lots of fat and speaking to other slimmer’s who are in the same situation can spur you on and keep you motivated.
Vary your workouts.
When your body has already adapted to the same workload that you constantly put on it such as when you are doing the same cardiovascular regimen day in and day out, it will not burn the same number of calories as when you first engaged yourself in the program.
Back then, your body still had to work constantly to adapt to the new stresses you have placed on it. And as a result, you lost weight fast. To continue shedding the fat off, change the intensity, duration, and frequency of your exercises. You can do interval training or concentrate on working out another muscle group that you don’t normally devote much attention to.
Don’t give up.
Most fat loss plateaus are triggered as a result of your body trying to adjust to the new diet. This changes should be only temporary so don’t give up your diet! REMEMBER: Your body has undergone a drastic change and it will take your metabolism time to catch up.