The human body is naturally programmed to keep us safe and therefore it will slow down its fat burning when it loses weight. It wants to preserve fat stores in case there’s a famine.
This means that after you have lost some weight, eventually you’ll hit a plateau and stop losing weight for a while.
But here are a few tips that might end that pesky situation where you think you’re doing all the right things and yet see no loss on the bathroom scales.
1) To lose weight you need a calorie deficit.
When you started your journey some months back with a calorie deficit, by now it might be the right amount of food for remaining at the new lower weight. Are there any dietary adjustments you could make so you consume fewer calories for your lighter body but not lose out on nutrition?
You don’t want to be slimmer and end up less healthy.
2) Increase your energy output
Say, in the past, you lost weight by using an eating plan combined with a certain level of exercise. But then something occurred and you stopped exercising but kept eating the same amount.
The reduction in energy output could be due to an injury or lifestyle change. Reducing your exercise level means you won’t burn as many calories as before.
Therefore could you change your energy output to the same or similar level as before? Perhaps you can slowly and safely re-introduce more movement.
A good way to increase fat burning is by building extra muscle. You can do that by using weights whilst sitting down. Increased muscle mass improves metabolism and fat burn even as you rest.
3) Switch up your workout routine.
Your body gets used to the same old routine and will adjust your metabolism to burn fewer calories. Challenge yourself and keep improving instead of using the same level of exercise.
4) Stop eating like you ran a marathon [unless you did!]
We do get hungry after exercise, but that should not mean we undo our hard work by following it up with a full-on meal replacement. A snack should remain a modest intake of calories.
For instance, don’t use a dessert-style protein shake that contains banana, nut butter, and oat milk. A simple protein shake with only powder, flax meal, a few berries, and either water or low-calorie almond milk is a better option.
5) Always watch your portion sizes.
Is that half a cup potato or pasta REALLY half a cup? Is that nut butter really one teaspoon or two, or is it creeping up to above a tablespoon?
Keep an eye on the portion sizes of calorie-dense foods and be honest with yourself about how much you really eat.
You may need to keep a food diary for a while for accountability and record each meal and snack.
And don’t forget to record all the small mouthfuls that you sneak in whilst preparing or cleaning up after a meal.
Do you pop leftover food into your mouth as you take the kitchen area back to pristine clean?
It can be an unhelpful habit we might not even be aware of.
I do admit to regularly polishing off my toddler’s leftovers 40 years ago…OMG, was it that long ago?
It was only after my friend pointed out: ‘gee, Nicki! Look at you. You’re finishing off his toast again…!” that I took care to stop eating leftovers unconsciously.