So you’ve been eating well and going to the gym regularly, but you have stopped seeing results. Whether you are trying to loss weight, gain muscle, or develop a particular fitness skill, you may realize that your progress has stalled. This is called a plateau, and if you’re not careful, it can kill your motivation.
A plateau might tempt you to give up on yourself and your fitness goal. Instead, use a few of these tips to power through a plateau and get back to reaching new heights in your fitness journey.
Keep scrolling for what to do when you hit a plateau
Accept the plateau
Regardless of your goals, your fitness journey won’t happen at a linear rate. Let me emphasize that, your fitness journey won’t happen at a linear rate. It is important to understand this and accept that plateaus happen. If you do, you are more likely to easily identify them when it happens. You are not stagnating, plateaus are just the beginning of a new process.
Evaluate your goal
After some time of working towards a goal, we lose sight of why that was a goal in the first place. If you are experiencing a plateau, make sure to revisit your initial goal and think about what inspired you to make that your aim.
Maybe consider revising if your initial goal no longer serves you. By making a few adjustments, you can make your goal more concrete or flexible to better set yourself up for success.
Focus on today
Forget tomorrow! Think about what you can do today to meet your goal. Sometimes a goal can seem so far in the future that it starts to feel too impossible to achieve. Try breaking up you big goal into smaller increments. That way, it is easier to track your progress and make a adjustment to keep you headed in the direction you want to. Keep that going until you reach your big goal.
Look beyond the scale for progress
Plateaus can sabotage our fitness journey and fool us into thinking we haven’t achieved much. Try taking a more holistic view when it comes to evaluating progress. Think about how much things have changed from the first day you started. If your goal is weight-loss based, it might help to take the focus off of the scale and consider other ways of progress. We can get so fixated on a number on the scale, that we forget about other ways our life has improved. This can help put the plateau in perspective.
Mix it up
If you want to avoid a plateau, change up your fitness routine. Plateaus tend to happen when you body adjusts to the demands your exercise routine requires of it. If you continue the same exercise regimen on the same schedule, your progress will not grow as much. Try shaking things up a bit.
Consult a expert
If you still feel you are plateauing, consult an professional. Whether that means investing in a trainer or seeing a dietitian, they may be able to optimize your current habits. They could also provide you with tips and tricks to get you in the direction you want to go. They can even provide a reality check, to get your priorities better aligned with your goals.
Get a buddy
Remember, you don’t have to do it alone. Having a buddy to go through this journey, can make all the difference. It can be great to have someone to cheer on, share struggles with, and exchange tips. However, it is important to only consider your own progress, since comparing progress is a waste of time. If your buddy is experiencing great progress, be happy for him/her! Your next improvement spike is coming soon.
No matter what you do, do not give up. Recognize that a plateau occurs for a reason and use these tips to change things up to keep on the path of progress. You made your goal for a reason, so follow through with it! The next time you reach a plateau, know that it’s not the end of progress, but the beginning of a new process.