What to Do When You Hit a Healthy Lifestyle Plateau
You’ve been exercising, eating healthier, and getting more sleep than ever before. Things were going great and your skinny pair of jeans finally fit a little better, but now it seems like you’ve screeched to a halt and haven’t seen much change for the last several months. We’ve all been there—often times it is easy to lose those first few pounds or run an extra mile by shifting major habits, but it’s the continuous change that is harder to sustain. Read on for our top trainer tips to keep you moving forward and feeling great!
Set a goal for each day.
Source: Sjana Elise Earp
Track every set and rep you do during your daily workout to show yourself you really are pushing an inch further. If you did three sets of five repetitions today, try doing three sets of six tomorrow. Or if you sprinted for 60 seconds yesterday, try going for 90 seconds today. While it may seem like small hurdles, baby steps will push you out of your comfort zone and kick-start the change you're working toward. If you need a little nudge, bring a friend along to hold you accountable. A buddy working out alongside you is great motivation!
Increase your daily calories.
Source: Kayla Itsines
Many women think less is more and with that eat as few calories as possible. While you might see short-term results, actually increasing calories allows your metabolism to kick in rather than go into fasting mode. Your body craves healthy fats and protein, especially when working out, so it’s important to make sure you’re eating enough to build muscle and see the benefits of your hard work. We love doing meal prep on Sunday to ensure the refrigerator is full of good food before the week kicks off!
Step away from the scale.
Source: My Sweat Life
If you’ve already lost a bit of initial weight and are now focusing on fitness, you might start to see the scale tip a bit heavier as you build muscle. At this point, the numbers aren’t as important as how you look and feel. Start taking biweekly pictures to look back on how your body has changed, spend a few dollars on a tape measure to use around your arms or waist, or keep a journal with notes about your energy level and lifestyle changes to really track your progress.
Change up your workout.
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If you’ve been doing the same exercise routine for a while, your body has adapted to become as efficient as possible during that specific activity. Changing your workout can shock your system and challenge muscles you haven’t been used much before. Each week, try to mix in cardio and strength training, repeating the same workout (but only one-time maximum). If you’re a runner, add hills or short sprints into your plan. If you like weights, focus on different body parts throughout the week and incorporate cardio bursts in between sets to ensure you’re varying your heart rate. Want to increase your flexibility? Add yoga into the mix to cross-train and diversify.
Eliminate “cheat days.”
Source: Cyn Eats
Life happens, and you are going to have days where you eat according to your goals and days when you have a few cookies! Don't beat yourself up! Instead of building cheat days into your schedule, develop a sustainable, consistent pattern for your body and then enjoy a meal out or that piece of birthday cake from time to time—and then get right back on track with the next meal. We have to stop the cycle of depriving ourselves and then shaming ourselves when we don’t succeed.