Pushing Past Plateaus: The Weight Loss Barrier


There is nothing more frustrating than spending a week working diligently to make healthy choices in your diet, only to reach the scale and realize that nothing has happened. You’ve made changes to your diet, you’ve incorporated exercise into your daily routine, you are eating healthier than you ever had in your life, and yet, here you are—at the same weight, you were a week ago!

When this happens (and it happens!) the absolute worst thing that you can do is to give up on your weight loss program. The reality is that the program is designed to work. When you are following the guidelines of a medical weight loss program, the problem isn’t coming from the dietary plan—it’s more than likely coming from some aspect of your execution of that plan. There are all sorts of ways that small, innocent mistakes could be impacting your ability to lose weight.

Here is a rundown of a few of the most common mistakes people make:

Mistake #1: Not drinking enough water. This is a big problem because your body relies on water for digestion, which is how you are able to discard waste and ultimately lose weight. Drinking juices or even sports drinks may help keep you hydrated, but they don’t help you lose weight.

Mistake #2: Eating too much salt. When coupled with not drinking enough water, this can spell major trouble in regards to your ability to lose weight. You may be adding salt to your diet unwittingly by adding spices to your foods, or by eating pre-prepared meals, such as frozen dinners. If you are having trouble reaching your weight loss goals try watching your sodium intake for a week.

Mistake #3: Relaxing with your workouts. When you head out for your workout, are you still working at max capacity for 30-60 minutes? Or has your walk become more casual, and perhaps only 20 minutes long? Before completely re-imagining your workout, consider if you are living up to the standards you’ve set for yourself.

Mistake #4: Hidden calories in beverages. Drinking your calories is one of the biggest mistakes you can make. There are hidden calories all over the place, from your coffee creamer to that bottle of wine that you enjoy mid-week. Even enjoying a sports drink during your workout can be an issue—especially if that Gatorade has more calories than you are actually burning during your workout.

If you are getting frustrated with your workout progress, check in with your weight loss doctor for support. There are plenty of small changes that you may be able to make in your diet to help you break past this barrier.