The dreaded plateau

One of the most frustrating occurrences that tends to happen after about eight-to-10 weeks on any fitness or diet program is the dreaded plateau.

One of the most frustrating occurrences that tends to happen after about eight-to-10 weeks on any fitness or diet program is the dreaded plateau.

A plateau can be defined as any point where you are moving along with your workout and everything is going great until one day everything just stops.

When this occurs, instead of throwing in the towel it’s time to instead look at what you can do to help change your luck and get progress moving along where you want it to be again.

Often all it takes is a small fix or here or there to get you right back on track to seeing results again.

Let’s go over a few of the methods that you can use to get yourself past the plateau should it occur.

Assess Your Calorie Intake

The very first thing that you should consider is what your calorie intake is. If you haven’t been regularly monitoring it to make sure it’s where it should be, now’s the time to get going with that.

The last thing you want to be doing is guessing with your calorie intake as this is the one thing that will, without question, make or break your progress.

If you’ve been taking in more calories than you should be on a daily basis, this definitely will be the single reason why you have not seen the results you were hoping for.

Determine Your Last Workout Break

Next, also think about when the last time you took a workout break was.

If it’s been quite a while, now may just be the time that you should get to it. Those who never give their body’s an extended period away from their workouts are far more likely to see overtraining set in and this can actually cause the body to hold onto its body fat stores as well.

One week off can give you the renewed focus you need to start pushing harder in the gym as well, which then means better overall results.

Consider A New Workout Program

If it hasn’t been all that long since you last took a workout break, then the next thing to consider is whether it may just be time for a whole new workout program. Sometimes the body is fully adapted to the program you’ve been doing and as such, isn’t showing the progress it should. By switching it up though you’ll throw a whole new stimulus at it and that will quickly get it back on track to getting you results.

Take A Diet Break

Finally, the last thing that you’ll definitely want to consider if you’ve been aiming to lose weight and nothing seems to be working is the possibility of taking a diet break. If you are certain that you are using a lowered calorie intake, then chances are high that you’re actually experiencing a decreased overall metabolic rate which is why it’s making it that much harder to lose body fat. If you bring your calories up to around maintenance for one week, then when you go back down on the diet you should find that you start seeing progress once again.

So be sure that you keep these quick tips in mind if you suffer from a plateau. As frustrating as it may seem, if you stick through it you can beat it and get back on track to seeing the results you’re after.

Cabel McElderry is a local personal trainer and nutrition coach. For more information on fitness and nutrition, visit the Fitness F/X website at