Hey Angels and Alphas,
Have you ever felt like your body is just hovering around certain numbers on the scale? No matter how much you try to clean up your diet or how much cardio you do, you can’t get the weight to move.
When it comes to weight loss, however, this is referred to as the set point weight theory. It suggests that the body will combat to maintain this specific weight range tightly regulated by your genetics and you have little control over that.
Set point weight is a theory that could, technically, be the result of evolution – wanting to hold on to excess energy may have allowed our ancestors to stay safe from famine. But it could also come down to the simple design mechanisms of the human body.
Your body works very hard to maintain a balanced internal environment. This means it’s constantly adjusting temperature, hormone levels, energy levels, and so much more. And just like your body sweats to cool you off, it might hold onto energy when you start cutting calories or working out too hard.
Sure, while you might be born with upper and lower set point ranges for your body weight, you still have the power to shift that and end up where you want to end up.
Here are 7 ways you can get started on the journey to doing exactly that:
#1 LOSE HALF A POUND A WEEK (OR AT LEAST AIM TO DO SO)
Fad diets that promise quick results are uncomfortable and largely unsustainable… they’re, in a way, build to backfire. The more rapid the changes you make, the more your body wants to fight back. To prevent this from happening, aim to lose a safe, healthy amount of weight every week and month.
If your body is getting the nutrition it requires to properly function, or just a little less than it’s used to, it’s going to be much more willing to finally let go of all that extra energy. This will help you lose more weight in the long term – and keep it off.
#2 FOCUS ON THE 5-10 PERCENT RULE
Research has proven that losing 5 to 10 percent of your total body weight is a smart approach. Losing more than 10 percent of your total body weight causes it to backfire and make it much harder to maintain weight loss results.
#3 LOG YOUR FOOD
Tracking what you’ve been eating is one of the most surefire strategies to lose weight. While monitoring your calories can help you notice if you’ve been overeating, it can also help you focus on your macronutrient breakdown.
Most people are shocked at how little protein they consume or how little fiber they’re taking in through their diet. Find ways to ramp up that protein intake.
#4 LOSE WEIGHT IN PHASES
If you want to lose 20 pounds, you need to first set that 5 percent goal. After that, try to maintain your new weight for a couple of months before starting another cycle of weight loss. This allows your body to gradually adjust to the new weight… and give you a psychological break from limitations you might be putting on yourself. The extra time taken might be worth it.
#5 THINK ABOUT PROBIOTICS
Changing your gut bacteria and their environment will help your weight-loss efforts and might change your set point weight. One recent review showed that probiotic supplementation has helped slightly reduce body fat percentage and body weight. If you’re thinking about supplementing with probiotics, or just eating more probiotic-rich foods, talk to your RD first.
#6 START STRENGTH TRAINING
Your basal metabolic rate is basically the number of calories your body burns while you are resting… meaning when you’re just sitting around breathing, sleeping, or fidgeting.
One way for you to shift your weight into a healthier range is to increase your BMR. Body composition is key here: muscle tissue will burn more calories than fat tissue, so you should be aiming to increase your muscle mass by doing compound movements that work multiple muscle groups at a time. This includes squats, pullups, deadlifts, and more.
#7 INCREASING YOUR NEAT
It’s a fact – the number of calories you will burn during your exercising is relatively small compared to the number of calories you burn through daily activities. The moment-to-moment calorie burn, also known as non-exercise activity thermogenesis (NEAT,) can be a useful tool to propel you to your new set point weight.
When you’re losing weight and taking in less and less calories, you tend to subconsciously start moving less than your body wants to.
The fix here is to add more NEAT into your life… by taking the stairs, carrying groceries, working standing up, cleaning up around your house, and more.