15 June 2009

Once Again in the Weight Loss Plateau

photo of koko sleeping in a bagWell, as I sit here writing this, I am once again in the throes of a weight loss plateau. I have been at the same weight for roughly two months now, so I feel it is time to mix things up a bit. Since the end of January, I have been exercising 5 days a week without fail. During the previous three weeks, I have increased my workouts to seven days a week; four days of strength training and three days of the dreaded Nordic Track.

Since I am still at 216 pounds, I feel that the only way to break this plateau, is to take a break from exercising. I bet it sounds really strange to say, that if I stop exercising for a week, I will begin to lose weight again? But, it does seem to work. You see, as you tally-forth on your exercise and diet regime, your body does not know what to expect, so it will expend the maximum amount of calories to make sure you have the energy you need. As you continue with the exercises, your body will begin to remember how many calories to expend in order to get you through the routine. You will eventually reach a point where, if you do not alter your exercises, your body will know exactly how many calories to burn. When this occurs, you will not be burning any additional calories and your weight will remain the same.

What you need to do, is to "trick" your body. You see, right now my body is expecting me to workout on my Total Gym or Nordic Track and it knows exactly how many calories to expend, to get me through my exercises. So, I need to break my routine and to do that, I'm not going to be exercising this week. I have got to say that it feels really strange not exercising. It is such an ingrained routine that it is going to be difficult not to do it.

If you read back what I just said, it may help to illustrate my point..."it is such an ingrained routine," with the keyword being: routine. In my mind, I am expecting to exercise today; if my mind expects me to exercise, what do you think my body is expecting?

You may be asking yourself, if this really works or not. Well, I have been at this for just shy of two years and I run into these things just about every six to eight weeks. When I take that well-deserved break and resume the following week, I begin to see the weight beginning to come off, once again. So yes, it does work. I have added a few things you might want to try to break your plateau...


  • Take a week off

  • Come up with new exercises or a different way of doing the old ones

  • Change-up the routine. Don't do it the same way each day

  • Do both strength training and cardio



Good Luck and let me know if I can be of any assistance.

2 comments:

  1. Maintaining is certainly better than gaining but I'm sure it's frustrating to plateau for so long. I hope your week off works!

    ReplyDelete
  2. BeadedTail: It is really frustrating, but you would think by now, that I would be able to recognize them a little faster:)

    ReplyDelete

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