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Kenneth Kukral of Mentor is a contestant in The News-Herald's Lighten Up in 2013.

Sunday, March 10, 2013

Looking to dive off the plateau

As everyone knows, the first group of pounds to lose is the easiest.  Then you eventually hit the dreaded “plateau”.  I am so ready to dive off that plateau and need to find a way to make it happen.  As I tend to do, I did a little research on how to get off the plateau and start taking off the pounds.  Here is what I found out:


-          Try calorie cycling (also known as intermittent fasting).  If you have been limiting your calories to say 1,600 a day, you would alternate doing 2,000 calories one day and 1,200 the next.  This “fools” your brain from believing you are in a “starvation” mode where your body adjusts and protects you from the lower calorie intake.

-          Mix up your workouts.  If you do the same routine over and over your body adjusts and the muscles learn to do the same activity using less energy.  By mixing it up it breaks your body out of this mode and uses up more calories.

-          Slow down your weight loss expectation.  Don’t expect significant amounts of weight to come off quickly.  Kind of like the tortoise and the hare story.  This will also help in your transition when you hit your goal weight.

-          Add in some strength training.  The more muscle mass you have, the higher your metabolic rate, and the more calories you burn, even at rest.  Your body will become more of a calorie burning machine.

-          Fill up on water-rich, fiber-filled foods like vegetables, fruits, beans, hot cereals, potatoes, corn, yams, whole-wheat pasta, and brown rice. Foods with a lot of water usually provide a lot of stomach-filling volume, but not a lot of calories.

-          Cut out calorie-containing beverages like soft drinks, alcohol, milk shakes, and even fruit and vegetable juices.  Being one of those people who needs to feel full when I eat a meal, drinking my calories will not help me achieve that goal.

-          Stress reduction is one tip that may actually reduce the often hyped “belly fat”. So if your pants aren’t any looser despite your best efforts with diet and exercise, reduce the stress in your life. Meditate, play with your dog, take a walk in nature, or just stop watching the damned news every night. Unplugging from our modern always-connected lifestyle and enjoying the simple things may be one of the best things you can do to break your fat loss plateau.


So now it is just incorporating these suggestions into my daily life.  I did find out that what I previously blogged about was true.  When you get more sleep it does suppress your hunger.  You have more energy and are less likely to “slip up” and eat calories you shouldn’t.


Kenneth Kukral

Plateau Breaker



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