This post will be all about a weight loss plateau and how to break it in order to continue losing weight. First of all, you have to understand that plateau is a natural and inevitable part of your weight loss journey. You will probably hit it more than once during your progress (especially if you have a lot of extra pounds to shed).
Of course, it feels really discouraging and frustrating when you do your best, you exercise a lot, following a healthy diet, but at some point, you just stuck and don’t see any progress. Your body doesn’t change or the numbers on the scale remain the same for weeks!
If you have PCOS, you may hit a weight loss plateau pretty often because women with PCOS have a slower metabolism. That’s why in our case to continue losing weight we have to be even more active than other
So how to deal with a weight loss plateau?
It’s really hard to stay motivated when you’re not seeing results as quickly as you think you should be.
But the only way to break through your weight-loss plateau is to continue pushing yourself further. To lose more body fat you need to cut calorie intake further and/or burn more calories through exercise. You also want to focus on boosting your metabolic rate as it slows down in the process of weight loss. This should be your main focus!
So these are the things I will cover in this post. Make sure to follow these recommendations and you will start losing weight again.
Increase your protein
If your weight loss has stalled, you have to try increasing your protein intake.
Why to do that? Because protein boosts metabolic rate. And that’s our main goal in order to break the plateau. Besides, it helps reduce appetite and make you feel full for longer.
Third, if you lift weights, protein will help you build muscles. And more muscles mean more calories are burnt during the day (even in a resting state).
I usually opt for high-quality protein powder when I need to increase my protein intake without eating too much.
Make sure to spread protein intake evenly. Try to include at least 20 grams of protein at each meal.
It can be:
- 1 scoop of protein powder
- 150 g tofu
- 130g tempeh
- 180 g cooked Edamame beans
- 230g cooked Adzuki beans
- 250g cooked Cannellini Beans
- 200g cooked lentils
- 3 large eggs
- 150g cottage cheese
- 200g low-fat Greek yogurt
- 5 tbsp pumpkin seeds (it’s better to spread this quantity through the day)
- 5 tbsp hemp seeds (it’s better to spread this quantity through the day)
cupsof soy milk
Reduce your carb intake
Many researches showed that low-carb diets may be very effective in burning fat especially if you want to break a weight loss plateau.
It happens because carbs cause blood sugar spikes and insulin raises that lead to excess fat storage (especially around your midsection).
Some low-carb diets (like keto) have been shown to reduce hunger and cravings as the high fat and protein content make you satisfied for longer.
I personally don’t think that a strict keto is the best way of eating. Especially, if you have PCOS you may want to avoid a ketosis state which causes stress for your body. And you want to avoid any additional stress by all means. It’s better to opt for more balanced diet you can stick to for a lifetime.
But I do think that relatively low-carb diet (about 60-80g carbs a day) may be beneficial for your health and can help you overcome a plateau.
The easiest way to go low carb is to substitute most of your grains for non-starchy vegetables/leafy greens.
Even if you follow a healthy diet, you may be not eating enough leafy greens and fiber. But they are the best things both for your health and weight loss.
Low-carb veggies you want to eat:
- Brussels sprouts
- Swiss chard
Eat more fiber (chia seeds, psyllium husk, flax seeds, oats, beans and peas, sweet potato, artichoke). Fiber is very filling so it helps to reduce the amount of excess food you eat. It also improves digestion and helps to maintain gut health.
Ideally, your dinner should consist of protein (use the sources I mentioned before), a big green salad with some flax seeds on top or a portion of low-carb veggies (like broccoli, cauliflower, brussels sprouts
Build more muscles
As I’ve mentioned at the very beginning of this article, you need to focus on increasing your metabolic rate in order to break a weight loss plateau.
Because as you lose fat, your own body weight decreases and so that your metabolic rate. We all know that the more pounds you have the more calories you burn while any activity. And vise
You can easily calculate how many calories YOU burn while sitting, standing, walking, running, lifting weights
One of the best ways to increase your metabolism and continue losing weight is by building muscles. As the amount of muscles you have influence how many calories you body burn during activity and at rest.
The more muscles you have, the more calories you burn even while sitting on a couch.
Last years, resistance training becomes very popular as it seems to be the most effective type of exercise for weight loss. It allows you to
So I highly-highly recommend adding more strength training to your fitness routine (either with your own body weight or with some
Besides, interval trainings
I’ve also noticed that HIIT helps me burn fat way more effectively than any other type of activity. So even though such workouts are really hard and challenging, I would rather sweat my face off than restrict myself in food or count calories all the time.
Another key point here to break a weight loss plateau is to increase the intensity of your workouts. If your body gets used to workouts, their frequency or duration, you won’t lose more weight. To continue burning fat you have to change something.
Usually adding more circuits or new types of exercises can help to start seeing progress again.
Make sure you’ve checked my post “How to burn fat fast” for more tips on training and eating for effective weight loss.
Add more activity effortlessly
Increasing your daily non-exercise physical activity can help boost your metabolic rate and promote weight loss.
Think outside the gym. How can you be more active during the day? Try to increase your daily physical activity by walking more, by adding cleaning routine, or by adding an extra walk with your dog. Any physical activity will help you burn more calories.
I encourage you to brainstorm ideas on how you can be more active effortlessly. Find an activity that brings you joy and you can do it mostly for fun (while burning extra calories).
For some people it may be playing tennis, or go swimming, or playing with a dog in a park.
If you lead a sedentary lifestyle, you may want to start standing instead of sitting which will help you burn way more calories without thinking about it!
The science-based formula shows that if your weight is 55 kg you burn 71 kcal per hour or 568 kcal for 8 hours by sitting. While if you are standing you burn 137 kcal per hour or 1096 kcal for 8 hours. If you weight more you burn even more calories.
This way you can create a deficit of 528 calories every single day that will help you lose a pound of fat in a week. That’s totally amazing!
For me it was life-changing. I’ve got this cool Artiss Standing desk (it’s an affiliate link) and never go back! I have exactly this one but in white color. You can also search for other options here. Now maintaining my weight becomes much easier than when I was sitting all day long. Besides, it helped me to reduce saddlebag fat on my thighs as well.
That’s all for today’s post. I really hope these tips will help you to overcome a weight loss plateau. I know first hand how discouraging it is when you do your best but the progress is so slow and it makes you want to quit…
But I encourage you to keep going. It takes times. Sometimes weight loss is a very long process. But be nice to yourself, take a short break if you need it, and then continue pushing. And you will achieve your goals for sure!
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