Monday, April 2, 2012

Don't Waste a Good Plateau!

At the summit of Linville Falls in North Carolina! 

Ah, the thrill of the chase! Sometimes, it seems like that's what weight loss really is, doesn't it? We love the anticipation of losing the weight, and the chase - when the weight is coming off and we're high on endorphins - can't be beat. But then, we catch it. And it all stops. It isn't fun anymore. The magic is gone.

We hit a plateau.

But this is the best part! The way I see it, a plateau is our body's way of telling us to slow down, take stock of things, and retool. I know, sometimes it feels like it's our body's way to telling us that we suck and are doomed to carry those last five pounds forever, but I promise you that it's a good thing.

Think of it like a nature hike. Yeah, I'm still thinking about my recent trip to the mountains. :)  You know how when you're hiking, you come across a spot of beautiful scenery that you just have to stop and admire? You might take out your water, sit down and admire the view, rest your feet for a bit, and think about the trail that lies ahead. Or, you might think about other things entirely! It's your rest, so you can think about whatever you dang well please.

That's a plateau. A resting spot to reflect on how far you've come and where you want to go next. And you know that there are even better stops in store, because the higher you climb, the better the view.

Don't begrudge your plateau. Use it! Sit down, rest, reflect, and get ready for the next leg of your hike. Just make sure that while you do, you don't take steps backwards. Having to retrace them later is a major pain.

If you're on a plateau, enjoy it: take a picture, rest your tired self, and refuel so you can get out there and get healthy!


Debra said...

good timing...

Sarah @ Semi-Sweet said...

Thanks for this, Heather! As you know, it's exactly what I need. As I was weighing in this a.m., I took time not to dwell on the scale not moving this week, but instead on how much I've lost and how much stronger I am already. I want *this* to be the time the plateau doesn't mess with me and make me give up!

Healthy Heather said...

Sarah, you were the inspiration for this post! :)

Sarah @ Semi-Sweet said...

Aww, that's awsome! And sort of reverse-inspiring to boot. Was just lthinking "I'm committing to this plan for the next 10 weeks (it's only been 4 so far), and then if I'm *still* not happy, well, then I'll re-assess." Goal-setting and knowing there's an end-point can sometimes give us the fuel we need to keep on keepin' on. Thanks again, Heather!

Healthy Heather said...

That's a great perspective. I like the idea of a deadline for when you can decide, "okay enough of this plan, on to something else!" rather than trying to reinvent the definition of insanity. :) Hope your pit stop is a short one!