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I know how frustrating it can be to hit a weight loss plateau and suddenly stop losing
weight despite the fact that you've tried with all your might. It is even more so
when your husband is dropping pounds more rapidly than you without actually doing
According to weight watchers, men tend to lose weight faster than women because of
their body composition and physical activity level. Men are bigger and have greater
muscle mass, which enables them to burn more calories every hour (higher metabolism),
even while resting, with minimal effort. Research has found that a man's metabolism
rate is 5-10 percent higher than a woman's, at the same height and weight in both.
In addition, men generally adopt a more active lifestyle than their female counterparts.
This might be because men are more likely to be involved in jobs that require a lot
of manual labor, or more inclined to run around, throw a Frisbee, or play ball games
with friends on a weekend afternoon.
These two major factors, along with hormonal makeup (water retention before your
menstrual period may look like a gain in weight) and brain pattern, makes it easier
and faster for men to lose weight. Women take a bit longer time to lose weight so
don't be discouraged and beat yourself up so much.
A weight loss plateau is normal and it happens to almost every dieter. So why does
weight loss slow down or stop after a while? When you lose weight, you lose both
fat and muscle that results in a slower metabolism. Having a slow metabolism means
that even if you eat like a bird and doing everything "right", you still gain more
weight (or not lose weight) than a person who eats far more than you.
Therefore, to continue losing more weight, you either have to increase physical activity
(burn more calories) or eat less (reduce calorie intake). Use the following weight
loss plateau breakers to overcome weight loss resistance, and help you quickly jump
back into weight loss mode again.
How to Lose Weight when Weight Loss Stops (or Slows Down)
1. Incorporate Strength Training
As explained earlier, muscles plays an important role in metabolism so you want to
build lean muscle mass to burn extra calories more efficiently and accelerate weight
loss (fat loss). You should incorporate strength training exercises into your workout,
2 to 3 times a week.
With regular strength training, you also strengthen bone tissue, increase bone density,
and help prevent osteoporosis later in life.
2. Change Your Exercise Routine
Your body can get used to the same repetitive exercise routine (in 3-4 weeks) that
you're doing to the point that it doesn't work as hard anymore to burn the fat. You
need to increase the duration and frequency of exercise, or change the intensity
and type of exercise you do to keep your muscles challenged and respond to your workouts.
If you go walking for exercise, try jogging, swimming, cycling, or jump rope. If
you're doing low intensity cardio work, try some high intensity exercise instead.
The other benefit of continuously changing your exercise routine is it invigorates
your training so you'll never get bored while your body gets a full workout.
Also, pack more physical activity into your day. Bike or walk instead of using the
car, if possible. Take the stairs instead of the elevator, or try digging in your
garden or yard.
3. Fine Tune Your Diet You need carbs to get your body functioning, but there are
certain carbs your body doesn't need. For example, simple carbs found in white bread
and durum wheat pasta, and foods made with white flour or white sugar. Instead, you
should eat carbs that will help you to burn fat like sprouted grain bread or foods
high in insoluble fiber, such as millet, or spelt.
Try eating less carbs and more protein, if your diet is higher in carbs. Protein
will satisfy your appetite, and keeps you fuller longer so you're less likely to
snack later in the day. I encourage you to eat a little protein with each of your
meals and snacks. Good healthy snack choices include a small handful of unsalted
almonds, or low-fat cottage cheese filled celery sticks.
4. Zig Zag Calories
You can also try calorie cycling (or zig zag dieting) to help you deal with weight
loss plateau. Zig zagging calories is the method of varying your daily calorie intake
to keep your metabolism guessing, while maintaining the same weekly intake. Let's
say you eat 1800 calories each day. Now try to consume 1200 calories one day, and
2000 calories the next. The idea to eat more calories some days than you do on others.
Another thing about calories intake; be very careful when you reduce calories. Make
sure you don't go below 1,200 calories. Fewer than 1,200 calories a day is counter-productive,
and won't help you to lose weight because your body enters "starvation mode", which
could slow down metabolism, thereby burning fewer calories and less fat.
5. Meal Frequency
Try not to skip meals. Eat 3 meals a day and have healthy snacks in between in order
to boost your metabolism rate and stave off hunger pangs.
If you don't see results, speak with your doctor or a dietitian to see if he can
suggest other ways to break through a weight loss plateau. It's also a good idea
to review your weight loss goals. You should aim to achieve and maintain a healthy
weight instead of an unrealistic dress size, or body shape.
Also, make sure to get enough sleep. Sleep deprivation can lower your metabolism
and leave you craving for unhealthy sugary foods.
By Diane Hanson
Please tell me what to do when weight loss stalls. I was doing so well for several
weeks, losing about 2-3 pounds per week, but now I'm stuck in a position where I
can't seem to lose anymore weight, no matter what I do. I tried to eat less at night,
avoided sugary snacks and increased my exercise frequency. My husband and I follow
a strict low fat diet plan; we eat the same amount of food and also exercise together.
However, for some strange reasons, he is losing weight faster than me! Why can't
I lose anymore weight, and how do I break a weight loss plateau? Please help me out
here, I would be love to lose another 10 pounds. I was 145 pounds and now I'm down
to 125. Thank you. – Cayla, Idaho.
Can't get motivated to work out every day, or find yourself making excuses not to
exercise all the time? We share some motivating ways to help you stick to your exercise
routine and get you back on track quickly.
What food items fall under the negative calorie foods list to burn calories and fat,
and help you lose more weight? Find out how to stay thin while munching away nutrient-packed
negative calorie fruits and vegetables.