Progress and Plateaus in Weight Loss

January 22, 2015 in STSMPT

Many therapeutic plans may include elements designed to achieve weight loss. This can be true for strategies treating osteoarthritis, diabetes, back pain, knee pain, hip pain, and general health. When a person begins good weight loss exercise and lifestyle changes, it’s common to see rapid success. Motivation soars as participants shoot toward their goals. However, it is also common that weight loss progress will reach a plateau somewhere on the way toward the ultimate goal. These plateaus can test a person’s motivation and adaptability.


Here are three common reasons for weight loss plateaus:


One: Sometimes, your own success is what causes this plateau. Both normal daily activities and scheduled exercise burn a certain number of calories. When we were ten to thirty pounds heavier, those activities required more calories. When we are lighter and fitter, we burn fewer calories to accomplish the same task.


Two: Calorie restriction actually causes the body to burn calories more efficiently. So your body starts burning fewer calories as a result of calorie restriction.


Three: During the start of weight loss, one might lose 75% of their weight from fat and 25% from muscle. As a body’s percentage of fat is decreased, the percentage of weight loss from muscle can increase. This is a problem for weight loss, because the more muscle you have, the higher your resting metabolic rate. The higher your resting metabolic rate, the more calories you burn.


This is why people who achieve some weight loss may need to periodically change their strategies to continue with that weight loss at a noticeable pace.  Issues to consider:


  • Does your exercise routine strike the right balance between cardio and resistance training for your current fitness levels and goals?
  • Have you kept a food journal to count your calories? Are you consuming more calories than you need based on your current fitness level?
  • Are you consuming the right number of meals at the optimal times of day?
  • Are you consuming the optimal amount of protein?
  • Does your exercise plan have the right frequency, intensity, and duration for your current fitness level and goals?


If needed, call us for professional assistance with your exercise plans to reach your weight loss and fitness goals.

Weight Loss


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