How to overcome the Plateau
Most of us have encountered a plateau before... Where it seems like nothing is changing, you are not making progress, you get discouraged, and are close to giving up.
I am telling you right now DO NOT GIVE UP. When you feel like you've reached a plateau, the first step is to keep up your routine for another 10 days to identify if you have actually reached this phase. If nothing has changed, you may want to consider some of the options below:
Check in with yourself
Draw awareness around your habits and ask yourself am I drinking enough water, what does my sleep quality & quantity look like, am I on my period, am I stressed?
Sometimes the smallest things can throw our bodies off. Listen to your body and take a rest when needed.
Life stressors may affect your performance in the gym or in life. So, check in with yourself and see if any changes should be considered.
Review your workout routine
- Consistency is key. To make a physical change you need to progressively overload your body/muscles. Have a consistent workout routine with basic compound movements. Sometimes less is more.
- Overload. When was the last time you have changed your workout volume? If you want to change your physique or get stronger, it's important you challenge yourself a little bit more each week. If you feel confident in maintaining good form, change your tempo, sets, reps, or weights to keep challenging yourself. Work till failure and give your body a reason to adapt. This is also very important when you are losing weight as you may loose muscle mass and want to 'hold on' to as much muscle as you can while losing fat.
- DO NOT use cardio with the goal to lose weight! - We need to get rid of this mindset!
I'm not talking about any trendy fad diets but 'diet' as in a way of eating...
- Adapt. You are losing/gaining weight when you are maintaining a calorie deficit/surplus. What some people forget... with your new bodyweight comes also a new calorie count. For most people adjusting the calorie intake will push you through the plateau.
- Macros. Seek help from a health professional/nutritionist and possibly adjust your macro ratios. Sometimes this will trigger your body to overcome the plateau.
- Maintenance. How long have you been in a calorie deficit/surplus? You may want to consider a maintenance phase. During this time you push the limit with how many calories you can consume without gaining or losing weight. Doing this for 1-2 weeks may be just the reset you need as you are teaching your body what your maintenance calories are. After the 1-2 weeks you can continue with you calorie deficit/surplus and have overcome the plateau.
All of the above are recommendations based on my personal experience with myself & my clients. If you would like to learn more, reach out to us and we'd be happy to connect you with a health professional :)
Cheers to hard work & consistency!