When I started working out and eating healthily a few years ago, I was pumped and excited and maybe a tad naive. I believed that if I exercised and ate healthy food, I would be able to lose weight whenever I wanted to. That is how things worked I happily told myself. How hard could it be? I had heard of the dreaded plateau but having never experienced it myself, I had no idea what these people were referring to. What did they mean when they said they had hit a plateau in their weight loss? Clearly, they weren’t doing something right I haughtily said to myself. Well, karma has a way of being a b*itch so trust and believe that I have completely refined my thoughts on the plateau and know exactly what this means.
I have always been a healthy weight, staying nicely within my BMI numbers but of course we all have aspirations of how we would prefer to look and we all look in the mirror and wish our tummy was more toned or that our thighs weren’t so big or that our arms didn’t jiggle so much and I’m no exception. I started working out and eating healthily because I wanted to look a certain way and I wanted to be happy and satisfied with the image that stared back at me in the mirror. So there have been and still are many times when I am trying to lose a pound or two for one reason or the other and on those occasions I have sometimes been circumvented by the plateau.
A plateau, when it refers to working out or dieting is a sudden halt in weight loss. It can also refer to a sudden halt in weight gain, but if you know someone who is trying to gain weight, then please tell me the name of this unicorn. A plateau in weight loss when working out usually occurs when your body mass has been reduced and your body no longer requires as many calories to sustain itself when it is at rest also known as your basal metabolic rate, to continue losing weight you have to either reduce your calorie intake or increase the intensity of your workout to encourage an increase in calorie burn.
Once I realized what was happening to my body, I was able to adjust my workout and eating accordingly. But imagine how frustrating it is to put in all the work that it takes to lose weight and to be met with a non-budging scale or no change in your measurements. Knowledge was definitely power in this case. Without knowing what is happening to your body, you may be tempted to give up on working out and eating the correct foods to lose weight, you may ask yourself what the point was if you weren’t getting any results. Our bodies are so complicated and sometimes what we think should work for it doesn’t which is why it is important to have as much knowledge as possible about how the body stores fat and uses muscle in order to see the results we so anxiously seek.
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