Ending Weight-loss Plateau

Updated on January 17, 2013
S.S. asks from Brooktondale, NY
12 answers

Since being diagnosed with hypothyroidism, I have finally managed to lose over 30 pounds over the past year through healthy eating, a low-carb diet and exercise. But for the past 3 months I have hit a plateau (128 lbs at 5'1") While I could live with this weight, I would like to take off those pesky last 10 lbs. I can't really up the exercise anymore - I run or power-walk around 10k every day with our dog and do weight training at the gym 2x a week. Any ideas how to ramp my weight loss back up?

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answers from Dallas on

I recently lost 90 pounds, and I am SO ridiculously prone to plateaus. I hate it. I always find that it helps when I shift the amount of calories I'm taking in for a couple of days. I usually up my calorie intake for a couple of days, and then the plateau will usually resolve. Not always, but usually.

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answers from Chicago on

This isn't about what you're eating. This is about your workouts.
Change your exercise regularly.
You need to make sure that you're not doing the same type of work for more than 3 weeks at a time.

HiiT training and Tabata (look on You Tube) are WONDERFUL for boosting your fitness levels and burning more calories than you will with that run or walk. And you'll get it done in 20 minutes instead of the hour plus.
Also...bootcamp, kickboxing...as well as your steady state stuff you've been doing is all good. Just vary it from week to week. And look at circuit style work to incorporate your cardio and weights together.

Bottom line...make a change, and you'll see that progress you're looking for.
I'm hypo thyroid, too.
Congratulations on your success so far!!

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answers from Norfolk on

Do you keep a food diary?
Try tracking what you eat.
You've reached a point where the calories you eat are in equilibrium with the calories you burn.
The food diary will tell you where you can shave off 100 or so calories.
Once you reach your target goal, carefully add some calories back in so you maintain that weight and reach a new equilibrium.
WebMD, SparkPeople, MyFitnessPal - all have good free food diaries - there are many out there.

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answers from Washington DC on

Keep a food diary and change what you're eating. Also change your workout routine. Your body is used to it so it's not a challenge. Do something new and different. Congrats!!!!

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answers from Washington DC on


CONGRATULATIONS!!! on the weight loss!! YOU GO GIRL!!!

Since you have been on a plateau for longer than 30 days - you are now taking in as many calories as you are expending - hence the plateau. I would change up my diet - more protein (eggs, bacon, etc.) and less white carbs (rice, flour, sugar, etc.) so that I am still eating healthy just changing it up....


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answers from New York on

Interval training.


answers from Williamsport on

You sound very slim to me! But if you MUST lose more: I recently honestly changed my life with an eating plan I found. I've always been slim and healthy WITH MASSIVE EFFORT, massively slow metabolism-perhaps even light thyroid issue, I never checked, massive eating discipline and exercise...always battling a few pounds like everyone else.....finally at 42, I was completely unable to lose a lingering 20 pounds I gained AFTER losing weight from baby #3 (now 3 years old and I gained the weight about a year ago without realizing it). I was eating as healthfully as humanly possible with my lifelong nutrition knowledge, and exercising as much as possible, and the weight was just not going way. I was starting to think, "At my age, maybe I just have to admit I can't be skinny anymore and I just have to love and accept my "thicker" middle-aged self and continue eating well and exercising for my health even though the weight never drops." SIGH. I reached out for advice from my co-exercisers at gym etc, but I was giving up, because I already ate healthier than anyone there and worked out as much or more.

THEN, I cleaned out my basement and came across the old book from 80's "Fit For Life" which I never read. I decided to read it, and then I tried it. WHAM I lost 15 pounds in three weeks and I'm still doing it 3 months later with tons of energy and clear skin, and I've gotten back to my skinny NY size (23 pounds lost total) from before all three kids. Most of all I have tons of energy. Now even if I don't exercise for a few days or a week, I don't gain weight. I'm just naturally thin because I eat healthy food the RIGHT way for my body to process it more easily and take maximum energy from it. It's a lifestyle, not a diet, so you have good days (most of the time) and bad days (Thanksgiving etc), but over-all, you never need to quit doing it because it's healthy and feels great. I would have dismissed it when I was younger and thinner, feeling like the theories on protein were wrong (it does NOT go with current fitness gurus who claim you need to eat healthy complete proteins all day long...I've BEEN doing that all along and was fat and exhausted-so my mind was open).

Anyway, my weight loss was so fast, I actually had a belly skin sag issue, but that has passed and now my waist is thin (from work-outs) with just some wrinkles where my stretch marks are since I no longer have a poochy belly to keep the wrinkles at bay. :( But all my work-outs are easier because I have so much more energy. People who haven't seen me in a few months are taken aback and comment immediately that I look great or I've lost weight.

Read the book, the library probably has it. You don't even have to cut carbs, just eat them with enough raw veggies, and don't MIX them with proteins in same meal and a few other rules, but you don't have to go hungry. I'm never hungry unless I find myself out running around for hours with no proper food options...but if I'm home I just eat when I'm hungry.



answers from Norfolk on

Jillian Michaels's book "Making the Cut" is designed to help you lose the last 10-20 lbs. I followed her plan when my youngest turned 1-year and it absolutely worked. It is a 30-day plan, and she provides the workouts and meal plan. I am 5'2" and got down to 110 with killer abs.

It is only 30 days so you cannot cheat or it won't work as well. Also, she suggests 15 mins of cardio to round out her workouts to one hour, but I would suggest 30 mins. And she only has you workout four days/wk. On a 5th day, do an hour of cardio. Good luck!



answers from Washington DC on

When my DH hits a plateau, he changes his routine. So if you walk, what about riding a bike? Or doing yoga? Or anything that is different. In the summer, my DH likes to swim. Is there a pool at the gym?



answers from Cincinnati on

Do you really NEED to lose 10 more? I am at about 5'3 maybe a little less. And am at 128.
I am pretty pumped. I also havent lost any in awhile. But w/ any weight training, you have to realize you are building muscle and that weighs more then fat.
If you are eating a healthy diet and exercising that much, I say be happy! Unless there is a target area you're not happy with, Im not sure why you want to lose more.
I am not thrilled still w/ my mid section. But after 3 kids, sometimes you just have to realize it is, what is......
Congrats on the weight loss!



answers from New York on

You probably just have to change things up a bit. Our bodies get used to doing the same exercise routine and food. Change your diet to a low-fat diet by taking in 1500 calories and 27 total grams of fat per day. Keep in mind you're to count total fat not saturated fat. Also read labels since foods marked "low-fat" may not really be low-fat. Keep total fat content in all snacks to 3 grams of fat or less. (Fruit is a great snack since it meets this criteria.) Keep all meals as low fat as possible, which means all meats should contain no more than 5-8 grams of total fat. Eat only 1-2 meats per day, which means the rest of your food is vegies, fruit, and low-fat cheese. Eggs are considered meat and one egg is enough. Never double digit the total fat contain at any one sitting. Can the diet soda and drink water instead.

As for exercise...You're doing great, but change that up a little too. Maybe instead of power walking, try skipping or dancing. Randomly skip around the house. Skipping might make you feel silly, but it's actually good for both your body and brain. It's a mood booster, which can lower the cortisol levels that keep you from loosing weight. Skipping is free, requires no gym fee, and no special equipment. Check out this website and look at some of the videos. http://www.iskip.com



answers from Rockford on

cease all solids and detox for at least three days. there are a lot of detox recipes online you could try, its a liquid you drink and only that liquid and nothing else.

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