I’ve stopped getting results – HELP!
The human body will adapt quickly to ANY training program fairly quickly. The fitter you become, the quicker it will adapt.
To overcome this, you must alter your program continuously. There are many ways to keep your body guessing, here are a few to try:
- Vary the exercises and drills within each workout. This can be done by altering the exercise order, intensity, duration or by combining different exercises together for different effects.
- Change up your frequency of training. If you usually train 3 times per week, have a couple of weeks every now and again, where you make an effort to train 5-6 times per week before backing down again. Conversely, if you always train 6 times per week, have the odd week where you back off to just 3 times. An easy way to increase your frequency, is to add in a Home Workout one-four times per week. Every single training session doesn’t have to be a long one.
- Change the time of day and the days that you train. If you always do Monday, Wednesday and Friday at 6am, try a week once in a while, where you train in the evenings instead, or vice versa. Come in the mornings even though you may not be a ‘morning person.’
- Add in something to really challenge your body on a regular basis. Be it a POW or Fit Girl/Fit Guy type challenge, an upcoming funrun or triathlon etc. Having something else to motivate you apart from just fatloss, will really improve the results you get from your training plan.
- If you are doing all of the above, you could try adding in one or two ‘aerobic’ training sessions per week. These could be fast walking, running, cycling etc and should last between 30-50 minutes each. The pace should be comfortable, with your breathing rate increasing slightly, but you should not be puffing and panting. Just remember not to do too much of this sort of training and never replace an otherwise intense session (such as Bootcamp) with lower intensity work. These training sessions should be in addition to 3-5 intense sessions of hard training, not instead of them. Just training at lower intensities is one of the biggest mistakes that people not getting results are making.
Another common cause of the ‘fat loss plateau’ is not actually sticking to your plan and kidding yourself that you are. This week, keep a food diary for 7 days and see what mistakes you are making. While it’s okay to have the occasional ‘treat,’ it’s not okay to eat rubbish every day or even more than once a day as is usually the practice for many people.
Having to write every single thing you consume down (as you consume it) will really point out your weaker areas. So take a notebook with you wherever you go and make sure you record EVERYTHING!! Don’t rely on your memory and try to record it all at the end of the day. Record it as soon as you have eaten it.
There are also many people who have hit a plateau because they are simply not eating enough. If your calories are too low, your body will go into starvation mode and no amount of extra training will make the slightest difference. While it’s okay to eat too fewer calories for short time periods (a few days) going any longer will cause your fat loss to stop.
The only way to get out of starvation mode is to eat more. Don’t eat junk though. Just increase your intake of fruits, vegetables and lean meats, eggs etc slightly above your maintenance level for a few days and see if that does the trick.
Depending on how long and to what degree you have slowed your metabolism, you could need between one day and a week or so of more food. The best way to avoid this in the first place, is to cycle your calories. Have one day where you raise your calories slightly (again no junk) before you have another 3-5 days of lower calorie eating. But be careful, even with this higher calorie day, if the other days are too low, you metabolism will still slow down and it will remain next to impossible for you to lose fat. Of course, the higher calorie day is not a license to eat rubbish and pig out, or you will undo the calorie restriction of the other days.
Sometimes your results will just lag behind even though you have been doing all the right things. If this is the case, it’s best to just hang in there and the results will come again. But if nothing happens for a few weeks, something is not right and to continue on in the same manner would be crazy. Something must change. Be it workout intensity or frequency, the timing of training, or something in your nutrition plan.
One thing is for sure though. It’s much better to eat a bit more and train harder than it is to eat less and do less. Firstly, extra intake of healthy food, will give your body more nutrients. That’s the first benefit. Secondly, your body is less likely to perceive that it is ‘starving’ if you are eating more. And thirdly, training hard will improve your fitness and help prevent many common illnesses and conditions that are prevalent in today’s society.
Think about it, eating less causes a decrease in your metabolism. Training hard increases your metabolism as does eating more. So why not do both for a double whammy of fat attacking.
So have a think about your health plan. Are you still getting results? Have you changed anything around lately? Are you really eating as healthily as you think/say you are? If you have any questions, comment to this post, or email me directly.
I can also do full personalised nutrition plans if you think this is where you are going wrong. Go to www.fitterfasteronline.com for more details.