Why Did I Stop Losing Weight - How To Get Over A Weight Loss Plateau

Let me guess…

You’re on a certain eating plan (whether temporarily or permanently) and up until this point, you were WINNING because you were losing… weight, that is.

The pounds were dropping off like leaves from a tree in autumn.

Then all of a sudden…


It came to a halt, just like that, and your weight has not BUDGED since.

How long has it been?

A few days?

A week?

Several weeks or longer?

However long it’s been, it’s got you all like,

“What happened?  WHY did I stop losing weight??”

I know the feeling, as it has happened to me.

So, let me just ease your mind a bit and let you know that weight loss stalls or plateaus are VERY COMMON and a normal part of the whole weight loss process.

What Causes a Plateau During Weight Loss?

Weight loss plateaus or stalls can actually be due to a number of factors.  Some of the most common ones are:

  • Water retention (typically in women)

  • Stress levels

  • Hormones

  • Changes in your dietary plan

  • Your body making adjustments & catching up

And a booklet I was reading over stated that a plateau is simply your body playing catch up with your success! It also quoted David Klurfeld, chairman of the nutrition and food science department at Wayne State University (The Detroit News, August 2003) as saying,

This is typically part of the journey as the body adjusts to its new calorie intake and energy out.

How To Get Over A Weight Loss Plateau

The first thing is to NOT allow yourself to get so bent out of shape that you start messin’ up and going off of your plan.

Now, more than ever, it’s important to STAY ON TRACK!

Don’t allow a case of the “oh wells” to set in.

Push past that and remember WHY you began this journey in the first place.

Stay focused… stay consistent.

Here are a few other things you can do…

Keep a food journal.  Document what you’re eating for a while to see if anything has changed from when you first began… not only the foods you’re eating, but how often you’re eating, times of day you’re eating, etc.

Consider how much weight you have left before your goal is reached.  Oftentimes, that last 5-10 lbs are THE hardest to shake off.  So if you’re down to that last bit before your ultimate weight loss goal is reached, take that into consideration and just keep pushing until your goal is reached!  You’ll also want to…

Tuck the scale away for a bit.  Weighing yourself during a plateau can cause feelings of frustration and disappointment.  So, ditch it temporarily and tell yourself that you’ll weigh in a week or so from now.  Instead of using the scale as a progress gauge…

Measure yourself.  Get a measuring tape and measure your waist, arms, hips and thighs because oftentimes, even if the scale isn’t moving, you could be still losing fat and losing inches!  Also consider how your clothes are fitting.  Try on that pair of jeans or shorts that were tight a couple of weeks ago and see how they’re fitting now!

vitamin D for vegetarians include sunshineFocus on and celebrate the success you’ve already achieved!  All too often, people focus heavily on the “negative” and totally negate and forget all the WONDERFUL PROGRESS you’ve made up until this point!

So keep reminding yourself of the GREAT JOB you’ve done thus far, how great you look & FEEL, and don’t allow ANYTHING, including a minor weight loss plateau, to take that away from you!

Remember that this is a JOURNEY… hopefully a LIFESTYLE… and NOT the end of the road towards reaching your goals.

Cherie King - Your Wellness Advocate

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