3 Weight-Loss Tricks to Play on Your Body
Your body is stubborn. It’s constantly comparing the calories you eat to the energy you use and adjusting your metabolism accordingly. When it calculates a caloric deficit, your body will conserve energy by slowing the rate at which it burns those calories -- sometimes to a point at which you’ll stop losing weight. (This is what’s known as a plateau.) In order to avoid a plateau, you have to play a few tricks.
Weight-Loss Trick #1: Play the Numbers
Extreme drops in caloric intake send your body into emergency mode. If you starve yourself, your metabolism hits the brakes. To trick your body into accepting a lower caloric intake, you have to be sneaky. Slowly lower your caloric intake so that it’s just a bit less than what you usually eat. That way, your body doesn’t shut down, and you’ll get the benefits of fewer calories.
Weight-Loss Trick #2: Hire Some Muscle
Lean body mass (muscle) can use up to eight times the amount of calories as body fat. But when you lose weight, your body takes both fat and muscle with it. That is, unless you trick your body by engaging in resistance training. Resistance training will help you build muscle while you lose fat.
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Weight-Loss Trick #3: Make a Break for It
If you’re consistently exercising, your body may get used to it and start to burn fewer calories even though you’re exerting the same amount of energy during each workout. You can trick your body by taking a break -- shut down and relax long enough for your body to get used to rest and then crank up the workouts again.
The Bottom Line
Like most challenges, avoiding a fitness plateau is a matter of understanding your body and the way it reacts to exercise and food.
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