So youve put together a weight loss plan and its working exactly as you expected. OK, its hard to stick to a diet, but with such great results, youre sure it will be no time until you are lithe and slender once again. But then all of a sudden disaster! Your weight loss comes to a screeching halt, your scale seems stuck on the same number, you may even gain a few pounds. Youve hit a weight loss plateau.
To understand weight loss plateaus, think about your weight loss calculator: you enter your current weight, height, and gender, and it tells you how many calories you need to maintain your current weight. You reduce your calories below that amount, and you start to lose pounds. But now that youve lost a few pounds, put your information into that weight loss calculator, and youll see that the calories you need to maintain your current weight are much less than they were at the start probably about what you are eating right now. Thats why the weight loss plateau has struck.
To look at it another way, imagine that you carry a ten-pound bag full of rocks with you wherever you go. Any exercise you do is going to be more strenuous, and its going to burn more calories. If you decide to stop carrying that bag of rocks around, your exercise will be less effective. The ten extra pounds of weight that you were carrying around with you act the same way.
So how do you get past a weight loss plateau and start losing weight once again? The biggest mistake that people make is to try to cut calories even more. That puts the body into starvation mode, and deprives you of the energy that you really need in this critical time. The best suggestions for moving beyond a weight loss plateau are:
* Exercise more. Keep your metabolism up and burn more calories by adding extra exercise to your weight loss regime.
* Build more muscle mass. Muscle is great for burning calories at rest and while exercising. Add weight or resistance training to your exercise regime to build up those muscles.
* Shake Up Your Eating Regime. Sometimes you can break your body out of a weight loss plateau by changing how you eat while keeping your total number of weekly calories the same. Eat fewer calories on one day and more the next (while sticking to healthy foods, of course). Add more proteins while cutting back on the carbs, or eat more meals per day, but make them smaller.
* Emphasize Complex Carbs. Now more than ever, you need to focus on replacing refined flours and sugars with complex carbohydrates like brown rice, whole grain wheat bread, and vegetables. This will give you the energy your body needs without the sugar crash and resulting hunger that you get by eating simple carbs.
One of the easiest ways to lose weight, with few restrictions on what you can eat, is the Low GI Diet. It works with your body and helps get over the hunger pangs associated with many other diets.