You’ve been exercising consistently for a few months now and the payoff has been BIG. Your weight has dropped, your biceps are bigger, your endurance has improved, and your pants are looser. Now, suddenly, you’ve stopped seeing results. It sounds like you’ve hit the dreaded plateau. Everyone who embarks on this journey will inevitably hit a plateau. What do you do now? Don’t give up! You can get past it, but you must work harder and smarter. It’s an opportunity for you to refine your goals and strategies. Push through the plateau by kicking it up with exercise.
The solution is NOT necessarily to increase the amount of time you workout. Take a look at the quality of your workouts and how you can change or alter them.
The following are some examples:
1. Walk faster. If you walk two miles in 20 minutes, cut it back to 18 minutes.
2. Increase intensity by walking on an incline. If you walk outside, take advantage of any steep inclines or hills. On the treadmill, increase the grade to 1 or 2.
3. Make your movements larger in a group exercise class. Lift your legs higher, sit lower in a squat, or hold that plank longer!
4. Push your muscles more. Increase your dumbbells from 5 pounds to 7 pounds.
5. Get out of your comfort zone and try a new fitness class. Or, attempt a new challenge like hiking or outdoor biking.
Keep in mind that your goal is to do cardio exercise 4 or 5 times a week for 30 minutes, and resistance training 2 or 3 times a week for 15-30 minutes. If you’re only doing resistance training two times a week, increase it to three.
Increase your daily activity by finding ways to move your body! Take stairs when possible, park your car far away, play soccer with the kids, or walk briskly through the mall with some friends. Everything you do will make a difference.
Hitting a plateau doesn’t have to be a negative thing. Make it positive by re-evaluating your workouts. If you haven’t yet tried one of our fitness classes taught by our fantastic instructors, come check it out! Just step out of your comfort zone and reap the benefits.
- Decreases body fat
- Increases sensitivity to insulin
- Decreases blood sugar levels
- Improves sleep
- Improves reflexes
- Decreases age related memory loss
- Improves balance
- Helps contribute to muscular endurance and flexibility
- Improves mood
- Increases energy!
You are right—there wasn’t one negative effect noted! So let’s explore the last bullet line a little further.
When we improve the heart’s ability to pump blood though out the body, the blood flow to the brain also increases. More oxygen and nutrients to this organ will enhance its overall function. You feel more alert and generally more productive. There is probably even a bit of bounce to your step!
A study published a few years back in the journal Psychotherapy and Psychosomatics, University of Georgia researchers found that inactive people who generally complained of fatigue could increase energy by 20% while decreasing fatigue by as much as 65% by simply participating in regular, low-intensity exercise.
If you are not currently in an exercise routine, what’s holding you back? If trying to figure out where to start, why not try one or more of our group classes. You are always encouraged to start at your own level and modifications can be made to any exercise. If group activities aren’t your thing, personal training can be the perfect fit. Check out the training specials on the next page!
Take advantage of our longer days and increasingly milder weather. Head outside for a walk and breathe deep! Adding Cardio-respiratory activity can help your body, your health and your mind.
No matter what your fitness level is, yoga can help you in many ways. Not only does yoga affect the physical aspect of the body, it addresses the mind and spirit as well. Yoga exercises are a great way to help relieve the stress of your day and can bring a sense of well-being to your life. Now we all can use a little of that! Here are the top ten benefits of yoga.
Stress Relief – Yoga can help reduce the effects of stress on your body. One of the benefits of yoga is that it encourages relaxation and can lower the amount of cortisol (the stress hormone) in your body. Studies show that prolonged high levels of cortisol can lead to heart disease and other health problems.
Improved Circulation – Yoga will help improve your body’s circulation. In turn, with daily exercises, you will see the benefits of yoga with lowered blood pressure and pulse rates.
Increased Cardiovascular Conditioning – Even the gentlest style of yoga will help to lower your resting heart rate and increase your overall endurance. This is one of the important benefits of yoga to help improve the amount of oxygen taken in during the daily exercises.
Relief from Pain – Daily exercises of yoga can help ease the aches and pains of the body. Many people with very serious diseases have reported less pain after these daily exercises or meditation.
Better Breathing – You will learn to take deeper, slower breaths with daily exercises of yoga. It will help to increase your lung function and set off the body’s relaxation response. This can be one of the most powerful benefits of yoga.
More Flexibility – You will notice your level of flexibility will increase, which will help you with your range of motion. Sometimes in the yoga daily exercises, people cannot even touch their toes. The benefits of yoga will include lengthening the muscles, tendons and ligaments in your body to help you become more flexible.
Increased Muscular Strength – Yoga poses use all the muscles in your body and help you increase your strength level from head to toe. Yoga and daily exercises will help you strengthen your muscles close to the bones, which increase the support of your skeletal system.
Weight Management – You will see the benefits of yoga begin to affect your scale. Daily exercises are always recommended, but yoga helps reduce the level of cortisol in your body which aids in weight loss and weight maintenance.
Improved Mental Clarity and Focus – You can have greater coordination, memory skills, reaction times, and improved concentration skills by utilizing yoga for daily exercises. These benefits of yoga will extend far out of the yoga class.
Inner Peace – What more could you want. This is one of the primary reasons that people do daily exercises of yoga. This is one of the most important benefits of yoga and is also one of the more easy ones to attain.
If you haven’t tried yoga, you should! You may find it is just what you need.
Join us Thursday evenings at 6 p.m.—your first class is free!
We’ve made a few changes within our Weight Loss Mobile App. If you have it on your mobile device then you’ve no doubt already noticed! Are you using all of the features that it offers? We have a short tutorial video that explains how to make the most of its features and enjoy your weight loss journey.
It’s so easy to let life get in the way when it comes to losing weight and taking care of yourself. This happens even if intellectually you know the awesome benefits that await you. Don’t let stress, fear or being overwhelmed hold you back. It’s a fact that if you were at a healthy weight and took better care of yourself you would feel better, have more energy, be more productive and maximize your enjoyment of life and activities with those you love. So what do you do??
You are the only one who can set yourself up for success and make the necessary changes. I don’t say this to stress you out, I share this as a hard core reality so you can get past the anxiety of change and get on to less weight and more life! It’s up to you and we are here to help you get past your barriers – you bring the motivation and determination and we can teach you the rest!
Here are some tips to get you started in the right direction:
Know Your Limits – What I mean is that I am giving you a prescription (permission) to NOT over-schedule yourself so you can get some “me” time in. This means getting comfortable saying “No” to things that stress you out and prevent you from accomplishing your goals. This can be done in a nice way so that guilt doesn’t take over. Be sympathetic, but firm. For example “I’m sorry, I cannot do this right now”. Answer the “why” question if it comes up with honesty “It doesn’t fit with my schedule” or “I can’t do this but I can (fill in with something more reasonable)”. Honesty is always best so you don’t lead people on and then disappoint them later. It’s ok! There are only 24 hours in a day. If you don’t fill your schedule with the things that mean the most to you, others will fill it in for you. You will be serving them much better in the future if you are happy and healthy.
Get enough sleep and feel renewed for a change (not to mention the fact that your body will be storing less fat).
Learn to eat for energy and health not live to eat whatever is convenient and available (Weight Management University™ and My Weight Loss Academy teach you how to do this in your particular situation incorporating your favorite foods as well).
De-stress with creative and enjoyable (yes – I said enjoyable) fitness activities. You may not believe me but I have seen so many people who “hate” fitness work it into their life and now they don’t let anything get in the way.
Day to day stress will always be a part of life but if you are healthier and happier, you will be able to handle what life sends your way. Always remember, you are not alone. We are here to help!