Get off of your Plateau!

At a weight-loss standstill? Here are some suggestions on how to break free.

If you've considered the usual reasons for plateaus and found precious few clues to explain why your weight-loss efforts are stalled, you may indeed be on a plateau. If you've been on many diets in your lifetime, you may be surprised to discover that you've plateaued at the same point in the past. These are the weights at which your body naturally starts to resist weight loss. It may be that your perception of what you should weigh is inappropriate and unhealthy. It's unlikely that at 45 you can be quite as slim as you were at 18. It may be that if you are unable to lose, it's because you are already where you should be. And if that definitely isn't the case, you really should lose more. Don't panic; the fat-burning engine usually starts up again.

Closely examine what you're eating. You might want to keep a food diary to make sure you're not consuming too many carbs. It's easy to forget one or two spots of indulgence. Try backing off your carbs slightly, for example, taking away the last 5 grams of carbohydrate you permitted yourself. You may have slipped slightly above your Critical Carbohydrate Level for Losing.

If you have not been in lipolysis for a while and are now stuck, you may want to gradually lower your carb level by 5 gram increments until your lipolysis test strips turn purple again. If all else fails, it's time to go back to Induction. Three to five days in Induction will usually start weight loss moving again. Sometimes the body just needs a little nudge. Then, when you move beyond Induction again, add on the carbohydrates a little more cautiously than you did before. It's quite possible that you have a fairly high degree of metabolic resistance.

If you're serious about following the Atkins Nutritional Approach for life, you have to invest some energy in exercise. Contrary to the messages our society generally sends us, your body was meant to move. Sitting around is unnatural. Working in an office is unnatural. In fact, a whole lot of modern life is unnatural. Parking in the far corner of the parking lot is not a mistake. It's where you should be because exercise is not optional, it's an integral part of doing Atkins. It's often neglected and sometimes quietly scorned, but if you think you're doing the program yet you're not exercising, you're not really doing the program. Building exercise into your lifestyle is one of the most intelligent ways of cracking through a plateau.

Discouraging as a plateau may be, you can't let it beat you. It may comfort you to hear that some individuals lose weight in a pattern of plateauing for a month, then taking a dip of four or more pounds, plateauing again and so on. If you get discouraged and start to cheat before seeing results, you will sabotage your success. Read this article once, twice or three times if you have to, but be convinced. You will win out in the end.