I have been dieting and Exercising for the past 3 months and have successfully lost about 12 kgs. My weight is 66kgs and my height is 5’3”. I am 25 years old. However, I am now unable to lose weight due to the weight loss plateau. I am a strict diet and do 40 mins of workout 6 days a week (10 mins Cross trainer and 20 mins Treadmill). Please help.
FROM GET YOUR REAR IN GEAR TRAINER, CHRIS FREYTAG:
Before you throw in your workout towel, first know you aren’t alone. Most people who try to lose weight hit a weight loss plateau at some point. My best tip to you is before you give up, change things up!
It sounds like you are doing a lot of cardio—which is great for calorie burn and heart health, but by adding some strength training, you may just get off your plateau and on your way to your goal! Muscle will rev up your metabolism because muscle uses more calories at rest than body fat. So the more muscle you have, the more calories you’ll burn, even when you’re staying perfectly still. And don’t worry, you won’t get bulky doing strength training; you will just get firm!
So try these four ideas to bust through your plateau:
Try mixing up your cardio routine: Our bodies are great at adapting to routine, but if you surprise your body with a different workout, you will see change. Choose something you don’t normally do: jog, bike, power walk, try a fitness DVD, or any other cardio exercise that interests you. When you do the same thing, you get the same results. Do something different!
Add strength training: Add some strength training with free weights, machines, or muscle sculpting classes to help boost your weight loss. Or use the weight of your own body—squats, lunges, push-ups, planks and pull-ups are great for seeing results!
And you don’t need to invest much time. Working with weights for as little as 20 minutes two to three days a week can be enough to crank up your Resting Metabolic Rate over time.
Keep a food journal: Food journals are so successful at helping people lose weight, because it’s the practice of writing down the truth. Make sure you are recording what you eat in your food journal—even when you take a bite here and there or nibble when you are preparing a meal. Food journals can be the perfect accountability partner. Plus, once you have a successful week or month, you will know exactly what you ate and you can follow that it again—your very own success plan!
Check your attitude. What are your thoughts about your weight loss and your ability to achieve it? You really do get what you focus on. If your thoughts are defeatist, you will be defeated. If you think positively, you will be positive and persevere. Empower yourself with healthy thoughts, supportive of your goals. Also, you mentioned your diet is strict. Don’t forget to let yourself indulge in your favorites on occasion. Being too strict and not enjoying what you eat can make you throw in the towel for the long-term. Eating healthy can be fun—make sure you are enjoying yourself!
**Chris Freytag is the Chairman of the Board of Directors for the American Council on Exercise and a certified personal trainer. Chris is also an author, blogger, speaker and TV personality on the subject of health and wellness. For more information go to www.chrisfreytag.com .
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