Breaking through a weight-loss plateau often seems like a lost cause. No matter how hard you try, the weight just refuses to budge. We agree with you that it gets frustrating sometimes! For many of us, it is that discouraging point where we are about to give up. But then what’s the point in taking a battle if you can’t put up a good fight? Hitting a weight loss plateau is completely normal and there are ways with which you can overcome it.
As they say, the devil lies in details. Take weight loss plateau as a good time to rethink and reboot your fitness plan – diet as well as a workout routine. Losing weight, in general, lowers your body’s energy needs, which causes your metabolism to slow down. By paying attention to your calorie intake and how many you are burning can help you knock off the weight loss plateau. Make your workout plan more diverse in terms of exercises and back it with a good meal plan that is nutritious and aids in weight-loss. Here are a few ways to do it….
- Bring in more complex carbs & fiber
You have already pushed simple carbs out of your meal plan and it has brought positive results on the scale. Now it’s time to include more complex carbs in your diet in order to control your calorie intake. Complex carbs have more nutrients and take longer for your body to digest. So they keep you feeling full for longer as well as keep blood sugar levels steady. In addition, complex carbohydrates offer a great mix of fiber, vitamins, and antioxidants. Fiber-rich food also helps you lose weight and keep it off long-term. It boosts your digestion and aids in keeping your portion size under control.
How to do it – Go for Complex Carbs such as Buckwheat, Steel cut oats with milk in the morning, whole barley and dalia. For more Fibre you can look at foods such as Green Leafy Vegetables and water rich fruits and veggies such as cucumber, watermelon, bottle gourd, pineapple and tomato.
- Get smart with your workout
For most of us, losing weight means looking slimmer or thinner! But that’s not what weight loss is all about. The focus should always be on losing fat and gaining more Lean Muscle Mass. Firstly, it helps you burn more calories; secondly, it helps improve your body’s metabolic rate, which is your body’s ability to burn calories in a resting state. Bring in some diversity in your workout regimen. Introduce new forms of exercises as doing the same workouts over and over reduces makes the body accustomed to those exercises. As a result, you burn far fewer calories than when you started. Slowly and gradually, increase the duration of your workout.
How to do it – Think of strength training, high-intensity workout (HIIT), eccentric training, etc. These exercises help increase the afterburn effect.
- Push with Protein
You already know that protein is good for your muscles. Here’s one more reason to amp your protein intake. Protein digestion boosts calorie burning by 20–30%, which is more than twice as much as fat or carbs. It also maintains muscle mass and prevents a drop in metabolic rate. Increasing your protein portion would also help minimize your carb intake.
How to do it – The 15 minutes window post workout is critical and 23g protein is needed which you can have from protein rich foods like Channa(1 tbsp) + Buttermilk(1 glass); Paneer(120 g) with Lemon; Sattu (4 tbsp) with water. A right combination is crucial such as Dal + Chawal; Moong Dal Cheela + Curd and Vegetable Quinoa.
- Manage Stress
Stress increases the cortisol levels, which is tied to excess weight and belly fat. In addition, higher cortisol levels stimulate hunger, particularly for junk food. Also when stressed, you are more likely to give in to cravings.
How to do it – You have to approach stress in different ways in order to manage or reduce it – take out me time; be in the present; do not do multi-tasking, light up Camphor or Lavender Oil, or have Ashwagandha capsule(1) before bedtime.
- Add more calories
It takes calories to burn calories. When you are on calorie restraint diet, your body gets into the survival mode, which mean the body starts storing fat. Also, the decreased food intake lowers the body’s metabolic rate in response. You need to provide fuel (food) to the body in order to get it out of the survival mode.
How to do it – Don’t take less than 800kcals. Add 200 kcals in diet from the Lentil family or from Whole grains. So if have been taking 800kcals then start taking 1000kcal or if you are consuming 1000kcal then start having 1200kcals. Your total calories should not be less than 1200kcals. Increase the workout simultaneously to break the plateau.
- Sleep well for a slimmer waistline
Studies have shown that those who sleep better eat better. Sleep deprivation can throw your hormones out of whack and makes you crave unhealthy food. When you sleep deprived, you are more likely to pick high-fat foods. Improper sleep patterns lead to weight gain. Also, having fixed sleep timings helps in stabilizing the hunger hormone.
How to do it – Don’t take your mobile or laptop to bed. Concentrating on your breaths while deep breathing could help fall asleep faster.