Yeah…you step on the scale expecting to see that your hard work has paid off only to discover that you haven’t lost anything in two weeks. Sound familiar? It’s familiar to me and I recall having months where I’d lose one pound in a whole month. I’d say to my husband “I’m going to be fat forever!” or I’d tell others how hard I was working and there must be something wrong with me because I’m not losing two pounds a week.
It’s not a happy moment when the scale doesn’t reward you for all your hard work but this is where you really need to take stock of what you’re doing and change your plan or your thinking.
First things first. Take a deep breath. It’s not the end of the world if you are truly doing everything perfect and you are a slow loser. Overall downward trend is what counts…it’s not a race!
Now let’s tackle your plan first. Here are a few areas to examine in no particular order:
– Are you hydrated enough? Sipping coffee or diet soda all day doesn’t cut it. Are you drinking enough water. I’m not going to suggest a magical formula but take a look at what you’re drinking instead of water and replace it with more water. You shouldn’t be having any caffeine anyway…it makes you hungry and harder to stick to your plan.
– Are you sleeping enough? What makes you think that burning the candle at both ends is going to serve you well? GET YOUR SLEEP! Your body is a machine and you need to get your sleep in order to let your body do it’s thing. If you’ve changed your diet and you’re exercising to be healthy then don’t skimp out on the rest of the stuff that adds up to good health. I used to go to bed at nearly 1am every morning then pop Tylenol every day. Now I aim to be in bed by 10pm because I don’t want to rely on Tylenol and I want to be healthy. Make sense? Good.
– Are you eating enough? You shouldn’t starve yourself. Your body needs good fuel and enough fuel. If you’ve just come off a juice fast/cleanse or some sort of severe calorie restriction your metabolism will slow down. A slow metabolism isn’t the end of the world. You will lose slowly but this is where you need to be sure you’re focusing on healthy food so you’re rebuilding your health and immunity rather than just following the latest fad diet. It’s not just about being a certain weight or a certain size…focus on getting healthy and building a strong body.
– Has your recent exercise caused you to build some muscle? If so then don’t worry. Skip the scale and try focusing on how your clothes fit or your measurements. The good news is that you may be burning fat and building muscle so the pounds cancel each other out but you should be seeing results on your body because one pound of fat takes up about 7 times more space then one pound of muscle.
– Are you eating too much? Wake up call! You may think you’re following your plan perfectly but are you really? I don’t mean to offend you however it’s happened to me. I get cocky and eyeball quantities of nuts, servings and ingredients in recipes only to find that my progress slowed. Take a good look at what you’re eating. Are extras sneaking in? A nibble here, a taste there can add up. Try keeping a food journal if you’re not aware of what you’re eating.
If food is so tasty that you’re eating extra servings then take a break and make some more basic food for a while to switch to food as fuel rather than food as a big source of pleasure. Alternatively you can increase the veggies and take a smaller serving of the stew…use it as an enhancement to the veggies rather then the centre-point of the meal.
Another thing to keep in mind is that your serving sizes may have been fine when you first started losing weight but the lighter/smaller you may need less food now. Eat until you’re no longer hungry but you can’t feel your stomach. If you’re moving away from the table and you’re stuffed then you’re eating too much. Play around with serving sizes to see what works for you.
– Are you exercising/moving your body? Don’t just reserve your activity each day to your daily workout. Break up the sedentary portions of your day with a walk or going up and down the stairs at work. Find ways to be more active. If you haven’t started an exercise program then what are you waiting for?
– If your plan allows for 80% on plan food and 20% indulgence then are you ready for 100% on plan? Giving it 100% may be the nudge your body needs to break through the slow losses or a plateau. And that 20% indulgence may be a bit more if you’re not fully aware of what you’re eating.
Alright…that’s enough for now. I’ll tackle the changes to your thinking next post.
Try reviewing your plan and making some tweaks to see if they help. I’d love to hear what you’re going through and what you’re planning on tackling.
Remember…it’s not the end of the world if you’re a slow loser. A slow metabolism means your body is aging slower…there’s an upside 🙂