4 Ways To Blast Through A Weight-Loss Plateau
How many of you have ever been stuck in a training rut? You were seeing results initially, particularly weight loss, but after some time the results suddenly seem non-existent. If your not losing weight anymore, this is called a weight-loss plateau. Now most of us see plateaus as something negative but, I am here to tell you that that’s not always the case. Your body is a great communicator, and if you just stopped to listen to your body more often, we could more fully understand the issue.
A plateau is a sign that your body has gotten used to whatever type of training you have been doing. Your body knows exactly how much energy it needs to expend in order to get your workout done and it only gives that amount- nothing more. Once your body has learned to expect what used to be unexpected, that’s when you will hit a plateau. Generally speaking: Plateau= Time to mix it up! Here are some ways to mix up your training and your mindset in order to blast through that dreaded plateau.
1. Find a fit friend to beat a weight-loss plateau
Do you have a friend who likes to work out, but is usually doing a different type of training than you? Call them to plan a time to train together! Maybe you are currently spending a lot of time weight training and your friend is into Pilates. This is a great way to spend time with a friend, try something new and utilize muscles that you aren’t used to using on a regular basis.
2. Find a new tempo
You don’t always have to do completely different exercises to mix up your training; test out mixing up the tempo. When lifting weights, for example, most people stay at what’s called a 2-0-2 tempo which is basically spending equal time concentrically (shortening of the muscle) as they do eccentrically (lengthening of the muscle). Let’s take a biceps curl for example. Most people keep the tempo fairly the same when curling (concentric) and uncurling (eccentric). Try curling the weight slower and releasing quicker or vice versa. You will definitely feel the burn a lot faster than you did before and this will cause some major muscle confusion. Same thing goes for a squat (with or without weights). Instead of squatting down and up fairly quickly, squat down very slowly and then come up quickly and vice versa. Start playing with the tempo of your exercises and you will definitely notice a difference.
3. Weight & Reps
(*Note: repetition= one complete movement of a single exercise)
Maybe you have been lifting lighter weights at higher repetitions consistently for some time and it’s time to change. Pick one day a week to lift a bit heavier, lowering the repetitions, and see how you feel. Side note: Women! Don’t be afraid to lift weights, our bodies do not produce enough testosterone (male hormone) to make us big and bulky. Scratch that myth from your brain.
4. Get a training binder
One of the best things I have ever done for my training is to make a training binder. In the binder put tabs for upper body, lower body, abs, cardio and anything else you want to work on. When you come across an exercise or workout, in a magazine, book or online, you think is cool and would like to try, tear it or print it out and file it under the appropriate tab. Over the years I have collected hundreds and hundreds of workouts in my binder. Whenever you feel that you are in training or weight-loss plateau or just need something new, you can go to this binder and find plenty of exercises and workouts to mix up your routine.
Now you know what your body is trying to tell you when you’re not losing weight anymore. Instead of getting frustrated, you can get excited now that you have tools to blast through your weight-loss plateau and continue on working towards your fat and weight loss goals.