Clients get very frustrated when they’ve been losing weight and then, without any change on their part, it suddenly stops. It’s what people refer to as “the last ten pounds.” It’s a real phenomenon and there’s a biological reason for it.
Your body has its “norms.” It likes to be a certain temperature, eat at a certain time, and be a certain weight. Our bodies like to stay within 5-10% of our current weight, generally speaking.
When you lose 10% of your weight, your body has to do a lot of adjusting, and naturally it will resist. This phenomenon is termed set-point. Once you’ve fought through it, weight-loss becomes easier again. Some people go through 4-5 set points before hitting their target weight, so it’s important to know how to push through one.
It is not impossible to lower a set point, but it is challenging. Anyone serious about shedding pounds can follow these steps to bust through a weight-loss plateau and sail down another 10%!
1. Add 20% of the current time you are spending on cardio to your session.
The way your body uses nutrients changes at approximately the 20/40/60 minute marks during cardiovascular fitness. Climbing your way toward a 60 minute session means you’re tapping into the fat nutrient for energy instead of burning recently ingested calories.
2. Eat Lean Meat.
If you add more to your cardio and you’re filling up on lean meat, your body will receive the okay to change. This combination is a direct and clear signal to your body that it is beneficial to lower your set point. It tells your body that you do not need to hold on to fat tissue and it initiates the metabolic changes necessary to burn fat stores.
3. Get Enough Sleep.
Sleep is essential for recovery. Research has shown that under slept people make poorer choices about food. This is because food and sleep, together, provide energy for the day. If you do not get enough sleep, your body will crave extra calories to compensate for lack of slumber!
4. Shave 200 calories
Set points stick because your body is so desperate to hold on to those “last ten pounds” that when your body gets the okay to burn fat stores, it takes one last measure to resist! It wants to replace the fat stores from the energy lost during extra cardio. You will either be hungrier or start storing fat again. Cutting that last bit of calories seals the weight-loss deal.