We all know the feeling. We’re chugging along, committed to getting healthy and looking good doing it, and BAM! Suddenly, the scale stops measuring our progress. If you are committed to a good nutritional program and tracking your food intake religiously, you are making progress. The scale won’t always be the only indication of your success, but it is still an important tool. If it has stopped in it’s tracks, here’s a few ways to get it going again.
1-If you have managed to lose some weight but you are still eating simple carbohydrates, stop it! Simple carbs cause fluid retention and even the carbs that do not contain sugar as an ingredient, will degrade into sugar in your body. Our bodies hold onto extra water to dilute sugar in our bloodstream. Cut out all simple carbohydrates to see a little drop on the scale.
2-Increase your exercise intensity, with your doctor’s permission. Always consult your medical doctor before beginning, or intensifying, any weight loss program. As you lose weight, the number of calories that you need to stay alive drops, and you can’t eat as many calories and still lose weight. If you increase the intensity of your exercise, you can offset this change.
3-TRACK EVERY BITE THAT GOES INTO YOUR MOUTH. I heard a saying years ago that sums this up, “If you bite it, write it.” Don’t think for one minute that you will remember what you ate and “keep track of it in your head”. You won’t. Be accountable and honest with yourself. You are the beneficiary of accurate record keeping and you are doing this for YOU.
4-Avoid alcohol. Alcohol is not your friend. It will lower your inhibitions and increase your appetite. It will also keep you from accurate record keeping. Once you get buzzed, all of your good intentions will fly out the window. It is also a source of empty calories and sugar. If you are serious about getting to a healthy weight just leave it alone.
5-Make sure to get enough fiber when you eat. Fiber will slow the absorption of your food, giving you a feeling of fullness much longer.
6-Stay well hydrated. Water is a catalyst and jumpstarts metabolic processes in your body. If you are well hydrated, your metabolism will perform smoother and better. You will get more benefit from your food and stay full and satisfied longer. One study showed that people who drink a serving of water before meals lost 44% more weight. (1)
7-Get your sleep! One study found that sleeping only 4-5 hours for 5 nights in a row caused a 2.6% decrease in the resting metabolic rate. (2) This drop was rectified by 12 hours of good restorative sleep. Less sleep also means an increase in cortisol, your stress hormone. This hormone will cause an increase in hunger and fat storage, and cause major problems for your weight control program.
8-Make sure to get protein at every meal and snack. Protein increases your metabolism because it’s harder to digest than carbs or fat. It will keep you from being hungry longer than carbs or fat also, and help to preserve and build muscle. You need muscle to be slim, toned, strong and healthy.
9-“Make your world small.” (David Yochim) Remove negative people and circumstances from your life. Cut out the dead wood. These situations raise cortisol levels just like lack of sleep and can make you stress eat and store more fat. Walk away from stress and you may see the benefit at the scale.
10-Plan your work and work your plan. Always have healthy food available and never skip meals. If you allow yourself to get too hungry, you will almost always overeat the first chance you get. By planning your meals and snacks, you can even pretrack your calories, carbs and protein and have more control of your nutrition throughout the day.
Never Give Up!
The only difference in a winner and a loser is that the winner got up, one more time. Don’t quit and you will win.