So, it seems I have plateaued on losing weight after the first month of 2017. This is no surprise, though. After all, I haven’t really been putting much effort into getting back into shape until the last few days. Did I decide I wanted to be a jolly fat guy the rest of my life? Nope. In fact, I took stock of myself last night and realized what I am doing wrong. Here is what I discovered.
Realizing Why I Plateaued at 248 Pounds
My New Years Resolution was to get myself into shape where I can look like Captain America for Halloween without looking like he developed a beer gut over the years. Then, I got so wrapped up into what was going on in my life that I started falling back into some of my old practices.
It wasn’t until the end of January that I realized I am getting sucked back into a non-active rut that will keep me at my current weight. At least I didn’t balloon back up to 287 pounds.
Why am I slacking recently?
Lack of Activity
Because of my situation, I’m not able to do some of the things that helped me lose 30-plus pounds. For instance, I don’t have an Xbox Kinect here in Los Angeles. And this is what is causing the biggest impact on me physically.
I don’t have something I enjoy that can boost my level of cardio throughout the day. Essentially, I am relying on walking around LA for things like groceries. It’s simply not enough. I need to find something else in my day that can elevate the heart rate. I would extend my walks, but I really don’t have time when considering my job.
A lack of activity doesn’t allow the body to burn off the fats and carbs you accumulate for energy. You can stave off gaining weight from a sedentary lifestyle simply by adding a walk or two throughout the day. But if you want to lose weight, there needs to be some form of movement beyond your normal routine.
Lack of Sleep
I am still plagued by not getting enough sleep at night. However, it hasn’t been completely my fault as of late. Sure there are times when I should have went to bed instead of playing Diablo III or watching YouTube. Lately, though, I’ve been waking up between 2:00 and 3:00 am after having weird dreams. I was like this every night for more than a week.
Needless to say, I am borderline exhausted today. Sitting here writing this, I know I could easily take a nap for an hour or two. Unfortunately, clients need my help this morning. Anyway, not getting enough sleep as easily contributed to why I plateaued in weight loss.
A lack of sleep not only saps your energy throughout the day, it can also cause a variety of issues in the body. In extreme cases, it can even cause hallucinations. I often experience irritability, lack of concentration and anxiety attacks. For February, I am definitely working on getting more shut-eye.
Lack of Tracking Calories
I’ve been terrible at tracking my calorie intake this last month. Probably because I know that I have been fairly bad when it comes to eating. While there has been more home-cooked foods in the last few weeks, it’s my snacking that seems out of control sometimes. Damn girl scout cookies.
Starting today, I am setting a goal for myself to track everything that goes into my body. Even if it puts me in the red in MyFitnessPal, I need to keep an eye on what I am eating. I’d also like to see where I am deficient in terms of vitamins and minerals.
MyFitnessPal can be an exceptionally useful tool as long as you’re willing to use it properly. It’s not a magic wand that will cause you to lose weight simply by using it. It’s merely a tool to help you see just how much crap your putting into yourself on a regular basis.
Lack of Motivation
One of the biggest things that have been a part of why I plateaued in weight loss is the lack of motivation. There are days when I know I can get my day started by going for a walk or exercising here in the bedroom. Unfortunately, I tend to zone out for almost an hour while drinking my coffee.
Part of my lack of motivation comes from not getting enough sleep. Take this morning, for example. I am sluggish beyond reason because I didn’t go to bed when I should have last night. I need to get it in my head that I am not in my 20s anymore and I can’t survive off of four to five hours of rest.
Motivation is different for everyone. The trick is finding something that can keep you focused on health even on the days where you would rather curl up with a book under the covers. In the beginning, you may have to force yourself into the routine. But with some luck, it will wind up becoming a habit you enjoy.
Building Muscle Mass
So, I know that I have lost some fat around my body. This is evident because I now need a tighter belt on my cargo shorts and my Fitbit is now on the fourth notch in instead of the third. I’ve added a bit of muscle work into January and it’s starting to show as the definition in my arms and chest is becoming more noticeable.
Don’t get me wrong, I am still a far cry from man-of-the-year material. However, this goes to show that you can lose fat without actually losing weight. I’ll still feel more comfortable if I could jog without parts of my body jiggling that shouldn’t be jiggling.
Muscle weighs more than fat. Which is why you shouldn’t be too overly concerned when stepping on the scale during daily workouts. Even cardio will contribute to creating more dense and lean muscle mass while dissolving fat. Although you may think you’ve plateaued, you may actually be putting on more muscle than you realize.
Keeping Focus for February
There is a lot going on in my life for February. This is going to be one of those “WTF” months as I am adding more onto my professional plate while trying to balance everything to get into my own home. However, I need to stay the course if I want to avoid being plateaued at 248.
It’s difficult to resist the urge to be lazy sometimes. Right now, I am using every ounce of strength not to lay back down on this warm and comfortable bed that is six inches from me. If you find yourself wavering, it’s never too late to change. Don’t worry about the issues of yesterday and just do your best to make today better. Meeting your daily goals only contributes to a healthier and happier you.