Happy Wednesday kiddos. This post is going to be a little more on the heavy side, you have been warned. But before we get into that, happy WIAW! Thanks again to Jenn from Peas & Crayons for hosting this little party :)

Yesterday I was in Providence, RI for the day for a conference. I forgot to grab something to eat for the ride, but luckily when I arrived at the Conference Center they had put out a breakfast buffet for all the attendees. One point for the work conference ;) I grabbed a plain bagel, Chobani Strawberry yogurt, and OJ and sat down before the sessions began!

The morning was broken up into two 1 and 1/2 hour sessions with a fifteen minute break in between. The first two sessions were informative and interesting, but by 12:30 my stomach was grumblin’! The conference provided lunch as well, and I couldn’t wait to see what they had in store for us!

I was blown away by the buffet options. I was imaging a few hamburgers, hot dogs, and a salad for the vegetarians. I was happily mistaken! The buffet menu consisted of: iceberg and romaine salad with balsamic dressing, roasted green beans and carrots, mashed potatoes, chicken in an artichoke garlic sauce, salmon, and vegetable lasagna.

So what did I do? Oh, why I tried one of everything…

And here’s plate #2 ladies & gents ;) YUM!

Oh, and did I forget to mention the 20 foot dessert table full of cakes ranging from cheesecake to ice cream cake to red velvet cake, more cookies than I knew existed, cupcakes, and the list goes on and on! Unfortunately I didn’t try all the desserts (although I thought about it for a good 20 minutes ;)) but I did try the cheesecake and it. was. mouthwateringly. delicious.

I wasn’t feeling too well after lunch and unfortunately I had to leave the conference an hour early because I felt so sick. Luckily I made it home in one piece but I quickly crawled into bed where I’ve been for the past 5 hours. I’m feeling a little better thankfully, but dreading tomorrow morning considering I have an 8:00 AM appointment and personal training tomorrow afternoon.

Yay. :(

Dinner was a turkey sandwich with guacamole, red peppers, and crunched Tostitos Scoops chips with a side of green beans. I’m not sure what I was thinking, but I had a craving for guac and I went with it. I finished dinner before I could even snap a photo (woops!).

And speaking of food, let’s move onto the heavy stuff. Lately I’ve been feeling extremely anxious anytime I eat, and I’m not quite sure why. Lately, the amount of guilt I’ve felt can’t be normal, and I wonder if it’s the stress of trying to get into shape before my sister’s birthday cruise in August.

I joined Weight Watchers shortly after getting a personal trainer about two months ago because I was ready to get back into shape and I knew I couldn’t do it on my own. And, frankly, when I stepped on the scale one morning the number petrified me. I decided then it was time to make a change.

Over the past 3 and a half months since making my lifestyle change I have lost 13 solid pounds. And although I’m happy with this achievement, I’m also beginning to get frustrated. I’m frustrated because I have altered my eating habits, my workout routine, basically my entire lifestyle to become healthy and in shape. I’m frustrated because I feel as if I should see more drastic changes and results in my body because I have worked so hard to change so much. I’m frustrated that losing weight is difficult for me. I’m frustrated because I think I’ve hit a weight-loss plateau. 

Logically, plateaus make sense. I understand why people experience them. What I don’t understand is why I can’t overcome it. For the past 5-6 weeks I’ve been consistently at the same weight fluctuating a pound or two up/down every now and then. And I feel upset. And angry. But most of all, I feel discouraged. Discouraged that after spending so much time, effort and money on personal training and Weight Watchers, I’m still about 25+ pounds away from my ultimate weight goal. Discouraged that I don’t have the self control I wish I had when it came to eating right. Discouraged that I may never achieve my goal.

But I’m also proud. I’m proud of how much progress I’ve made, although it’s been slow. But you know what they say, slow and steady wins the race. I’m proud that I ran a mile in under 10 minutes for the first time in almost 8 years with the help of J, my personal trainer. I’m proud that the next week I ran a mile on my own without anyone standing by my side pushing me in 10 minutes and 30 seconds. I’m proud that I have changed my eating habits dramatically for the better which, in the long run, will help me become healthier. I’m proud that my clothes are starting to fit better (although I still have aways to go). I’m proud of the mental strength I’ve gained. I’m proud that I won’t accept anything less than my goal of losing 40 pounds. And I’m proud of the 13 pounds I’ve lost to date.

So although there’s days when I feel like I can’t keep doing it anymore, I know I can. I know that this is temporary, and I’m going to overcome this plateau and continue on my way to my ultimate goal. In honor of this resolution, I’m starting a challenge for myself and all of you.

I challenge you to make one healthy decision a day. It could be passing up that extra slice of cake, or simply walking to the store instead of driving. It all starts somewhere, so let’s start here: We’ll make one healthy choice a day while on our journey to a healthier lifestyle :)

…But let’s start this tomorrow because these animal crackers are calling my name ;) Have a wonderful Wednesday!

Have you ever found yourself in a weight loss plateau? How did you overcome it? What’s the best advice you would give to someone trying to lose weight? How did you deal with the frustration of how slow the weight loss process tends to go?

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25 responses to “Plateaus

  1. I’m so proud of you for recognizing the accomplishments that you have made!! They are awesome! I know a lot of people that have hit weight loss plateaus and it’s definitely something that you just have to push through and not give up over. I know you’re working with a personal trainer, but I’ve heard that adding in a couple sessions of intervals each week can really help! Intervals help to supercharge your metabolism!

    • I think the toughest part is not wanting to give up and just keep pushing yourself harder. I definitely am going to try to do some interval workouts each week when I’m not meeting with J. Thanks for the encouragement, it means so much! :)

  2. 13 pounds is nothing to scoff at! That’s a great accomplishment, Sara! Plateaus are very common, both from the diet aspect and the fitness aspect. Like Lindsay says, I know interval training helps break through the plateau fitness-wise. They keep the body guessing and the high intensity gets the heart rate pumping fast! I definitely know the feeling of guilt or fear when eating. Don’t let the diet consume you. You’re clearly on the right path and are seeing results. It’s slow and steady. Keep up the hard work, girl!

    • Ahhh thank you Sarah! Like I told Lindsay, I’m going to try some interval training workouts to keep my body on edge :) Thank you for the support!!!

  3. 13 pounds is amazing you should be so proud of yourself! i don’t weigh myself but when I use to I found that I lost about 12 pounds easily and then hit a plateau where it was so hard to loose those last however many pounds I wanted to loose..i also felt like I focused too much on the number rather than how i looked..muscle weighs more than fat and I realized I would rather focus on strength training and getting my body toned than the number on the scale.

    • Thank you Chelcie! I actually thought about that and I’m hoping that while I’m losing fat, I’m gaining muscle which is why the number is staying the same. I’m proud of the 13, but I still have aways to go. But it’s so true, I should take into account that weight is only a number and it’s really about how you look AND feel! I definitely can feel myself getting stronger, it just gets a little discouraging when the number stays the same! Hopefully I’ll break through this soon enough :)

  4. First: Great job so far! Second: I’m in the same boat. I started the get in shape/ lose weight thing on January 1st and the first 4 months went pretty well. I have lost about 8 pounds (it was 10 but I’m up 2). I think the most important thing to do is to focus on the good and not so much on the bad. For me, I know that I really struggle with moderation on the weekend so I am trying to put the same focus I have during the week and use it during the weekend too, hopefully with paying more attention to my bad weekend habits I can turn it around. I cannot wait to read more – I hope you beat the plateau!

    • Thank you Lauren! You have NO idea how encouraging it is to hear from someone else losing weight slowly. I know it’s the healthy way to go, but sometimes it can get discouraging when I think that I’ve been working at this for almost 4 months and only have 13 pounds to show for it, but at the same time 13 pounds that are solidly off is a huge accomplishment and I just have to keep pushing myself!

      Moderation on the weekend is a HUGE problem for me. I love to go out and have a few drinks with my friends, which can sometimes lead to one too many, which can lead to a hangover, which leads to me eating whatever I want. I’m trying to turn my bad weekend habits around, especially while I’m trying to lose another 10 pounds before my cruise. Thank you so much for your comment, it’s a huge source of motivation and encouragement!!

  5. I absolutely know you feel! And you should be so proud of yourself because it is really hard to lose weight. When I gained 30 + pounds my freshman year of college… it took me until almost the end of my sophomore year to lose it (and I still have not lost all of it but I was too thin prior to going to college). I think I found what worked best for me was taking it day by day. Read my post from today and it will give you a better insight into what works for me. Hang in there and I am absolutely here for you if you want to talk!! Try not to be too hard on yourself… like I said, it is a day to day process.

  6. 13 pounds is amazing! And plateaus are really hard. The “one healthy decision” a day things is terrific– I like taking it one day at a time too, makes it easier than looking too much at the overwhelming big picture

    • I think that’s going to be the goal for me, to take everything one day at a time. And if I look at the positive (the one healthy thing I did that day) then maybe I can stop feeling this guilt every time I indulge or snack on something that may not be the best of me!

  7. Plateaus are tough. For me, the only way not to give up and totally lose my mind during them is to constantly remind myself that small changes make big differences in the long-run.

  8. Hi Sara! I first want to say that I hope you feel better by this point! Feeling sick if obviously sucktastic, especially when away from you proper home, so get better asap!
    Second, it is a bit hard for me to comment on this post, just because of the WW business and all of that (totes not your fault obviously, just a bit sensitive for me ;) ) but I am so glad to hear you are recognizing all of the achievements you have and how far you have come!

    • It’s funny you mention the WW thing because I actually have been starting to focus less and less on the “points” value. It was great in the beginning because it caused me to realize that I was over eating like CRAZY. My portion sizes were out of control and the foods I was eating were AWFUL. It also taught me which foods are “power” foods and are better for you (veggies > carbs, whole grain > white bread). This knowledge in the long run has helped me tremendously, but the whole counting every single thing you eat has actually started to stress me out, and I know it’s not good for me which is why I’ve taken a step back. I realize that I can still eat what I want but I know what proper portion sizes are (thanks to WW) and what foods will fuel my body better. They also have great recipes that are filling and healthy, and by weighing in each week it holds myself accountable to someone other than myself :)

  9. I love how openly and honest you chat about weight. You are awesome. I think not giving up is the best advice-I mean I know I have had plenty of running plateaus and it’s hard to run right through them when you aren’t making progress. How about different cross training methods or different exercise and foods?

  10. Pingback: I’d Cap That « Sara & The City·

  11. I totally hear you on being frustrated. I feel like I have made a TON of positive changes in my life, but nothing really reflects that in the weight loss department. I have about 45 pounds to lose now and after my vacation I got mad at myself (again) and have a renewed dedication (again). You have done better than I have at any point so far (in years of “trying” to lose weight) in the fact that you’ve actually lost anything! :) So YAY for that!! I have a problem because I LOVE good food…which is not always good for you food. I do well for a few days, then start sliding. Then I wonder why I’m not losing?!? Probably because I’m not eating the way I should be even while keeping up with workouts and such.

    Anyway, basically the point of that is I know how you feel….good luck and if you find the secret be sure to let me know. :)

  12. Losing weight is hard! And it sucks when you’ve done so much, but your body isn’t responding how you’d like. My only real suggestion for you is to buy a Groupon/Living Social deal.
    Sounds weird, right? Well I’ve known so many people that have busted through plateaus simply by changing their routine a little bit. And those Groupon-type sites are always running deals for fitness things. So next time you see a deal for something you haven’t done, regardless of how silly you think it is or how much you think it won’t work, buy it and use it. It could help.
    G’luck with your continued weight loss and remember to celebrate the weight you’ve already lost.

  13. hey Sara, firstly..go you for being so honest about all this heavy stuff! secondly 13 pounds over 14 weeks is actually ideal- so well done! although u feel u have reached a plateau maintaining your weight loss is actually something to be so so proud of especially at this stage so again chin up! I have seen so many people including myself put back on the weight after losing too quick. well done on your running too. I ran one mile last week in a relay and I swear it was as hard and as painful as running longer races. run sara run :) ps see you sunday me and amy are trying crossfit monday (its a free trial) if you want to join. Im as weak as water so should be a bit entertaining if anything.

    • SHUT UP! I’ve been DYING to try CrossFit but have been too nervous to go alone so I am 100% in! Can’t wait to see you Sunday & hear about the CrossFit details. Ahhh I can’t wait!

  14. First off, way to go! 13 pounds is awesome! Secondly, your story really hit home. I can’t believe I’m about to write this, but your post really related to me. About 2 years ago, I lost around 25 pounds, getting down to an unhealthily low number. I was way too restrictive + exercised my butt off (doing the bodyrock workouts daily if you are familiar with that website). Then, within the next year, I gained 45 + lbs, but sitting around, feeling miserable, and eating my face off. The start of the weight gain started healthily, as I needed to gain a bit for my health, but trust me, it wasn’t all healthy weight. Now, since February, I am slowly trying to lose [most, not all of] it. It is a daily struggle. The slow and steady route is just so … slow! Thank you for writing this post, it’s good to know I’m not the only one who feels discourage sometimes.

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