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Bustin' Out! Tips on how to get through when the body won't budge

By Kate Kane-Joyce

Oh, the dreaded plateau! If you are trying to achieve fitness and body composition changes, inevitably you will reach a point in your journey everything seems to come to a grinding halt. But fear not! Change can be constant, even for a stubborn metabolism. Here are some ideas on how to keep your engine running, and move on towards your goals.

Add exercise/add a diet plan:

If you have been doing one of these without the other and are stuck in limbo, now is the time to make a move. Consider this; if you are eating more calories than necessary on a daily basis, it is illogical to think that 30-45 minutes of exercise 3-4 times a week is going to give you optimum results. Likewise, if you are eating healthfully (proper caloric intake for your lifestyle) but asking no more work from your body than necessary, you will burn no more calories. Consulting a nutritionist for an eating/diet plan, or a personal trainer for a workout that works for you is an investment in yourself.

Honesty is the best policy:

What are you eating, really? Are you really working out as hard as you could? If you are serious about change, have a heart to heart with yourself and ask for the truth. It may mean that you have to eat up a no-cal slice of humble pie, but when you do the things that bring about positive change in your physique, you learn how to bring about well-being, and become a better friend to yourself. And if you decide you don't need the extra 300 calories from your daily latte, you may save a little cash. Bonus!

Pack your lunch:

When you prepare your own food daily you are able to control the content and quality of nutrients. You know exactly how and what something was cooked in, and you can keep out any unwanted extras, like trans fats. Prepare your meals in large batches and package them in individual-serving plastic containers in your fridge. In the morning when you leave, just take the meals that you need. If you do not cook, learning some basic techniques in the kitchen will prove priceless to your waisteline, and can also impress a date.

Water, water, water:

It is a myth that drinking water will make you feel more full. It can only make you feel less thirsty. That being said, thirst can be misinterpreted by the brain as hunger. Water is a major player in all of the body's functions, especially the digestion and breakdown of food for fuel. Having optimum levels of H2O in the system keeps things humming. An average person with a moderately active lifestyle should aim to drink 2-3 liters a day. An elite athlete should be drinking close to two gallons. Where do you fit in?


In addition to a healthful diet, fiber provides the stimulation necessary to keep the intestines and colon clean and functioning. Natural sources of fiber include unprocessed grains and raw or lightly cooked veggies. Besides these, fiber can be found in health food stores in capsule or powder form. A great source of supplemental fiber that has numerous additional health benefits is flax seed oil. Flax seed oil can be found in capsule and liquid form. You can also enjoy the seeds whole or milled.


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