Navigating A Weight Loss Plateau: The Weight Loss Roller Coaster

August 22, 2023

Losing weight can feel like riding a roller coaster, and hitting that weight loss plateau can feel like the biggest hill to climb. The journey is filled with crazy ups, challenging downs, unexpected twists, and many turns. Just as a roller coaster offers a mix of excitement and uncertainty, so does the process of dropping those extra pounds. As a nutrition coach working closely with clients on their weight loss goals, I often find that the path to success resembles a roller coaster ride more than a straightforward, linear journey.

Embracing the Weight Loss Roller Coaster

Picture this: the exhilarating rush of the first drop, the anticipation of the uphill climb, the adrenaline of the curves and loops—these are all experiences that mirror the weight loss journey. It’s essential to understand that weight loss isn’t a fixed path. It’s more like a roller coaster ride with its hills and drops.

When we start a weight loss journey, we often have high expectations for consistent progress. We imagine steady weight loss week after week. However, just like life itself, weight loss is full of ups and downs. There will be good days, bad days, chaotic days, and lazy days throughout your journey. Acknowledging and embracing this roller coaster-like nature of long-term weight loss can better prepare you mentally and emotionally for what lies ahead.

The Initial Drop: An Exciting Start

Imagine the first exhilarating drop on a roller coaster. It’s a rush of excitement that propels you forward. Similarly, when you begin your weight loss journey, you might experience rapid initial progress. The pounds seem to melt away, providing a motivating push that keeps you going.

This initial drop usually stems from shedding water weight and adapting to new habits. Your body responds positively to changes like healthier eating and increased physical activity. However, this rapid loss isn’t sustainable week after week. Just as a roller coaster slows down after the initial drop, you will likely hit a weight loss plateau.

The Weight Loss Plateau: Navigating the Roller Coaster’s In-Betweens

Once the initial excitement settles, you might find that your weight loss progress slows down. It’s like the roller coaster climbing uphill after the first drop. This is a crucial phase of your journey and marks the beginning of the real work. Rather than feeling discouraged, recognize that the weight loss plateau is an opportunity for growth and self-discovery.

During this phase, it’s time to truly listen to your body. This is where my “Best Self Method” comes into play. It’s a three-step approach: Research, Adjust, and Heal. This method can be applied at any stage of your weight loss journey to uncover what’s working and what needs adjustment.

Research: Take a deep dive into your habits, starting with your sleep, diet, and movement. Sleep, often overlooked, is critical for weight loss. Aim for 6 to 8 hours of quality sleep each night. Evaluate the types of foods you’re consuming—are they nutrient-dense or calorie-dense? Consider where your food is coming from and whether you’re eating out or preparing your meals.

Adjust: Armed with research, start making changes. If you hit a plateau, your body might need an adjustment in terms of diet or exercise. Maybe that food that worked for the initial drop isn’t the best for the long term. Consider incorporating different types of physical activity to keep your body challenged.

Heal: This is where the true transformation happens. With research and adjustments, you’re on the path to sustainable weight loss. As you see results, you’ll start to feel the positive impact on your energy, confidence, and overall well-being.

Building a Support System: The Heart of the Journey

Just as riding a roller coaster can be more enjoyable with friends, the weight loss journey benefits from a strong support system. Research shows that having accountability increases your chances of success by 50%. Whether it’s a friend, family member, workout buddy, or an online community, having someone to share your victories and challenges with can make all the difference. Bring someone along on the roller coaster ride and you will see a difference, almost immediately.

Embracing the Entire Journey

The weight loss journey is like a roller coaster with its ups and downs, twists and turns. The initial drop might give you a burst of motivation, but the real progress happens during the weight loss plateau phase. It’s here that you need to research, adjust, and heal, using The Best Self Method. Remember to listen to your body, prioritize sleep, make mindful food choices, and engage in movement that suits you.

While the weight loss roller coaster can be challenging, the results are worth it. Imagine the joy of keeping up with your kids or feeling confident in your favorite clothes. The journey is filled with its own unique twists, but in the end, it’s about becoming the best version of yourself. So hold on tight, embrace the ride, and remember that this is the one roller coaster you only want to go on once.

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Kristin Longacre

Hey There, I’m Kristin, a gluten-free nutrition coach helping gluten-free families adjust to their new lifestyle.

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