Welcome to the end of week #2—another week towards your New Year’s resolution and 2018 goals. By now you’re likely feeling one of two ways; either super motivated as you see results, or unmotivated by a lack thereof. That’s probably why today actually marks the day when most people give up on their New Year’s resolutions.
So, for those of you that have made achieving a healthy weight your New Year’s goal, it’s time to listen up. Even with eating a balanced diet and getting routine exercise, there are many factors that can make weight loss difficult (to say the least). Common things—besides food—that can impact your ability to lose weight include:
· Chronic stress
· Too little sleep
· An imbalance of gut bacteria
· A low resting metabolism
But let’s not forget one of the most common culprits behind slowed weight loss—not adjusting your diet as you lose weight. Unfortunately, that same diet that helped you to shed pounds a few weeks ago may lose effectiveness as you weigh less and less. So, how do you adjust what you to eat to support long-term weight loss? Let’s do some calorie math.
Your calorie baseline is the number of calories you need to maintain your weight. Most diets are based on reducing that number by 1,000 calories a day for a two-pound-a-week loss. But the less you weigh, the fewer calories needed to maintain your weight, and fewer still to lose weight. For instance, you need about 100 fewer calories a day if you drop from 160 to 140 pounds.
· If you're moderately active, it takes about 2,250 calories a day to maintain 160 pounds, and 1,250 calories a day to lose 2 pounds per week.
· If you're moderately active, it takes about 2,150 calories a day to maintain 140 pounds and 1,150 calories a day to lose 2 pounds a week.
So, without lowering the total number of calories you're eating on your diet, that 2 pound-a-week weight loss could drop off a bit. You'll still lose weight, just not as fast—which is a bummer.
So, what should you do?
To keep losing at that same ideal rate, you can up your exercise, reduce calories or do some of both. While that may sound simple enough, it can be difficult to balance fewer calories and increased exercise with getting a balanced and nutritious diet. After all, with added exercise, getting the right vitamins and nutrients is essential.