It breaks my heart seeing people get discouraged when they plateau or see their weight loss slow down, when that happens we all go back to our diaries to figure out what went wrong.
So I decided to take my time and put up a post together of important things everyone should know when beginning this beautiful journey, it's filled with useful information that will help you avoid plateuing and continue loosing weight succesfully. Please be sure to read the section "ways to avoid plateauting", the tips written under that section should be incorporated in your daily routine, they will help your weight loss journey!

I am sorry for any mispelling and hope it all makes sense. If you have any questions or need any help feel free to message/add me! Have wonderful day and enjoy! :flowerforyou:

:heart: :heart: SETTING PROPER DAILY CALORIE GOALS ON MFP :heart: :heart:
When you set your MFP daily calorie goals, it asks your activity level. If you choose any other activity level than sedentary it will give you higher calorie goal because it’s assuming you will exercise that week and burn those calories off; if you do not exercise than you will obviously gain weight. Also if your exercise calories are calculated into your daily goals than whatever calories burned exercising that you log you can’t technically use (eat back) because it’s already calculated into your daily goal.
If you like to eat your calories back than do the following:

Set your activity level to “sedentary”, than whatever exercise calories you log you can eat back. Make sure you know exactly how many calories you burned by using HRM, if you follow MFP calories you may end up gaining instead. If you do it this way you treat your calories like a bank. You can save for the weekend so you don’t end up cheating or use them as you please daily.

:heart: :heart: INVEST IN A HRM :heart: :heart:
MFP overestimates calories burned by as much as 200-400cals per hour of working out, it overestimated my calories burned walking by 50%! Thank God I wasn’t eating calories back when I first started because I would have gained weight instead of loosing-if that happened I would have gotten discouraged and given up. It’s CRUCIAL to know the right amount of calories burned.
So invest in HRM that comes with a chest strap, amazon does free 5-8 day shipping.

I highly recommend the Polar brands (Polar FT4, FT7, or FT60). If you want a cheap version cause you don’t have much money, than get this Timex Easy Trainer HRM, it’s only $37. If you get this Timex than use below link to calculate calories burned.

:flowerforyou: TIMEX HRM LINK:

:flowerforyou: CALCULATOR LINK:
Note: put down 35 for VO2 Max if you do not know yours, do not put 0 or it will overestimate your calories. Scroll down past the ads to use the calculator.


:heart: :heart: LOG ALL YOUR FOOD/EXERCISE :heart: :heart:
It’s crucial to log everything so you know how much you’re eating, also it’s important so that you can make sure you get enough protein and fiber in your diet.

:smile: FIBER: If you find yourself always hungry you most likely need more fiber, fiber helps you stay fuller longer.

:smile: PROTEIN: Make sure you meet your protein daily goals or better, otherwise your body will eat your muscle tissue, and you will lose muscle mass-no bueno!

:smile: WATER: You have to make sure you get enough water too, otherwise you will have a lot of “I gained this week and I feel discouraged” moments. My body sometimes holds as much 5 lbs of water, so you may thing your gaining but you’re not, you’re just not getting enough water. If this happens take a look at your sodium, you’re probably having too much. Teas, coffe, sodas, etc do not count as water sources, they actually dehydrate you.

Make sure to log all your foods, if you ever plateau it will help you determine what you need to change up and point out the things that no longer work for you.

:heart: :heart: MAKE LOTS AND LOTS OF FRIENDS :heart: :heart:
I can’t stress the important of having enough friends on here, the support alone will help you stay motivated and focused. These friends will encourage you to make better choices and give you tips/advise whenever you need. Your friends will constantly inspire you to work harder, eat cleaner, and to try new things.
If you haven’t done so already go into “Community” tab, click on “Introduce Yourself” section, than post a new topic and introduce yourself, say you’re looking to make some new support buddies. You can also browse through other people’s posts on there and find other people looking for support who would love to have you as a friend.

:heart: :heart: AS YOU LOOSE WEIGHT ADJUST CALORIE GOAL :heart: :heart:
You know how when you first start off you loose a lot of weight and than it slows, and slows, and slows more down? Well that’s because your body is carrying less weight so it needs less and less energy, so the calorie deficit you started off with is much lower now.

For example:
At 200 lbs my BMR was approximately 1750
At 170 lbs my BMR is approximately 1550
The difference in daily calorie burn is 200 calories, multiply that by 7 and it’s 1400 calories each week, that’s almost half a pound! So instead of loosing 2lbs a week like you used to- you now lose 1.6lbs

Now let’s say you want to keep loosing 2lbs like you used to, well you now need to create a deficit of 200 calories each day.
A lot of times MFP has you already set at your lowest amount of 1200cals, and you should never eat less than that. So you’ve to exercise and burn off that 200 calories each day.

Easy way to calculate the deficit is go to BMR calculator, put in your info at your highest weight, write down your BMR; than plug in your current weight and write down the BMR. Take the difference between the calories and that’s how much you need burn exercising in order to keep loosing same weight as before!

NOTE: the closer and close you get to your goal weight, the harder it will become to make that deficit, and the biggest the deficit the less nutrition your body is getting so make sure you take multi-vitamin or dietary supplements so that you get enough nutrition for your body. If you don’t your body could eventually go into “starvation mode”.

:heart: :heart: STRENGTH TRAINING :heart: :heart:
As I mentioned below you can break plateaus by doing strength training. Strength training is as important as cardio, it helps speed up the amount of calories you burn resting- the more muscle you have the more you burn while resting. Do strength training every other day, do not do it everyday because your muscles need to rest in order to grow. Strength training does not mean you will become “buff”, you can simply “tone”.

:heart: :heart: SAVING CALORIES/CHEAT DAYS :heart: :heart:
If you’re the type of person who feels super guilty after a cheat day, here is a friendly solution. If you set your activity level to sedentary than you know how many of your exercise calories you can use. So if you know you have a party coming up on the weekend, than during the week save 100-300cals from exercise each day. And than whatever you accumulate you can use on the special occasion. This is ideal for holidays!
If you choose to cheat without saving calories. Than eat only the amount you need to “maintain” your weight, this way you won’t loose any but at least you won’t gain.

:heart: :heart: EATING CLEAN+VITAMINS :heart: :heart:
If your daily calorie goals are low in numbers or if you don’t eat as “clean” as other people do than you need take a multi-vitamin to make sure your body is getting proper nutrition. If your body doesn’t get what it needs it may start eating your muscle tissue, or you may become tired, weak, etc. Also make sure you get enough calcium, as you exercise it’s important to have enough of it.

:flowerforyou: :heart: :heart: :heart: :heart: :heart: WAY TO AVOID PLATEAUING :heart: :heart: :heart: :heart: :heart: :flowerforyou:
You’ll see tons of people posting topics about how they’ve plateaud for weeks/months and they need help on ways to break it. Well here is a sum of things you can do, and if you do them chances are you’ll never plateau. If you are doing the same things over and over again, your body "knows" what to expect so you have to mix it up!
Plateauing can occur for numerous reasons, most of the time it’s because your body has gotten too “used” to your routine, so you have to do things to “surprise” it to keep your body constantly guessing.


:heart: :heart: ZIG-ZAG YOUR DIET :heart: :heart:
Zig-zagging, or calorie cycling is the process of varying daily calorie intake, while maintaining the same weekly intake. Instead of consuming (for example) precisely 1200 calories each day - you can mix it up. Eat 1200 calories one day, and 1600 calories the next. In the end when you add up your weekly calorie consumption and than average it by 7 days it should equal to your daily calorie goal.

Ex. Monday: 1200cals
Tuesday: 1600cals
Wendsday: 1400cals
Thursday: 1200cals
Friday: 1600cals
Saturday: 1200cals
Sunday: 1400cals

Total Weekly Calories: 9,600/week divide by 7= 1371 cals/day

Now let’s say my daily goal is 1200cals and not 1371, so right now it’s set with excess of 171 cals, so all I would have to do is deduct 171 calories from each daily goal in order to meet my weekly goals and still zig-zag my diet.

Or you can leave daily calories goals at 1371. You can either burn off 171 by exercising, or instead take 171 cals and multiply by 7, the number it comes out with is amount of calories you would have to burn by exercising that week in order to meet your weekly goals which zig-zaging diet.

Ex. 171x7=1197 calories you would have to burn that week.

:heart: :heart: SWITCH UP YOUR DIET:heart::heart:

If you eat a lot of the same things day after day, switch it up, add some new food that you don’t typically eat. Switch up between eating the usual and the new every other day.

Ex. I like to eat same subways sandwich I always do for lunch, I like to have my usual chicken burrito after work for dinner. So I will do that 4 days of the week and the other 3 days I throw in “unusual”/”new” things.

On my “new” days I eat soups, different types of sandwiches, salads, new fruit or veggies, etc. These days are good for going out because restaurant have large variety of foods and full of new things to try. You can eat whatever you want as long as it’s different from your normal foods.

Monday/Wendsday/Friday/Sunday: Eat my “usual” foods
Tuesday/Thursday/Saturday: I eat something new and different

:heart: :heart: SWITCH UP YOUR EXERCISE ROUTINE :heart: :heart:
So you go walking a lot? Then try jogging, or swimming, or cycling -- anything that will change the way your body is working. If you are doing low intensity cardio work, then try some high intensity exercise.

Monday/Wendsday/Friday/Sunday: Do my usual exercise routine
Tuesday/Thursday/Saturday: Add something new to my usual routine or try something new completely.

:heart: :heart: HAVE A HIGH CALORIE MEAL :heart: :heart:
Another way to “Surprise” your body is by throwing in a high calorie meal couple times a week. If your meals are typically 300-500 than have a high calorie meal of 600-1000. If you throw in a high calorie meal couple times a week it will keep surprising your metabolism, which is good for avoiding/breaking the pleateau.

:heart: :heart: REDUCE CARBS :heart: :heart:
Try reducing your carb intake to 50-100 grams per day to reduce insulin production and fire up your fat metabolism. Make sure that you’re eating enough protein for your weight .
If you have a carbohydrate snack every day at morning tea time - change it to a protein snack. Whatever you are doing consistently - try mixing it up a bit.

:heart: :heart: CHANGE MEAL FREQUECY :heart: :heart:
If you are eating three square meals a day - start adding snacks in between (which may mean reducing the portion size of the main meals).Eating more often can help curb cravings and binge eating. Smaller meals in right portions of carb/protein/fat can keep blood sugar/insulin stable and encourage more fat burning while in the “fed” state all day long.

:heart: :heart: STRENGTH TRAINING :heart: :heart:
If you’re not doing this already than it’s time to start. Working your muscles will help to strengthen bone tissue, increase lean mass, and ultimately boost metabolic rate. Weight training doesn’t mean you have to become “buff”, you can still build muscle and tone.

EAT SLOW: Eating slow helps boost your metabolism, nutritionist recommend chewing each bite for at least 20 chews.


  • Tori_356
    Tori_356 Posts: 510 Member
  • spammyanna
    spammyanna Posts: 871 Member
    Thanks, but you didn't need to post it 3 times. Once was sufficient.
  • Thanks, but you didn't need to post it 3 times. Once was sufficient.

    Yes, and i would do more research about the "CHANGE MEAL FREQUECY" part
  • Kany
    Kany Posts: 336
    *Bump - saving it for later
  • bump
  • killagb
    killagb Posts: 3,280 Member
    Some of these facts are questionable.
  • Summerleahd
    Summerleahd Posts: 314 Member
    Some of these facts are questionable.


    Some good info, but people should do their own research and do what's best for them
  • Goal_Seeker_1988
    Goal_Seeker_1988 Posts: 1,625 Member
    Wow! Well this could def be a refer to post!!!
  • albayin
    albayin Posts: 2,524 Member
    Thanks, but you didn't need to post it 3 times. Once was sufficient.
    and with 3 different subjects?
  • killagb
    killagb Posts: 3,280 Member
    It's also a bad idea to exercise EVERY day of the week.
  • stevwil41
    stevwil41 Posts: 608 Member
    I'm going to have to disagree with you on the exercise calories bit. Your daily goal is adjusted according to your activity level but your exercise calories aren't figured into it. If you want to be reasonably accurate with your goals you need to set your activity level to what it actually is and log your exercise. I'm on my feet and moving all day at work plus I get a fairly good work out in 6 mornings a week. It's not reasonable to assume that someone who's sedentary during their daily life but works out a comparable amount has the same needs as I do. That last bit is assuming they have the same height/age/sex/etc. Nice, informative post though. Thanks for taking the time to be encouraging.
  • KelseyLayne
    KelseyLayne Posts: 23 Member
    Wow harsh responses for a motivational post! Thanks for the tips! Clearly you've had success so maybe some will benefit from the same routine!
  • reddcat
    reddcat Posts: 314 Member
  • killagb
    killagb Posts: 3,280 Member
    Wow harsh responses for a motivational post! Thanks for the tips! Clearly you've had success so maybe some will benefit from the same routine!
    That logic is known as broscience.

    From Urban Dictionary:
    Broscience is the predominant brand of reasoning in bodybuilding circles where the anecdotal reports of jacked dudes are considered more credible than scientific research.
  • servilia
    servilia Posts: 3,453 Member
    Thanks, but you didn't need to post it 3 times. Once was sufficient.

    Yes, and i would do more research about the "CHANGE MEAL FREQUECY" part

    Yeah I was pretty much ok with it all until I got to that part. A LOT of people have success with intermittent fasting. You don't need to eat a gazillion times a day.
  • Wow harsh responses for a motivational post! Thanks for the tips! Clearly you've had success so maybe some will benefit from the same routine!

    Not harsh, just pointing out flaws. Constructive criticism :]
  • Jorra
    Jorra Posts: 3,339 Member
    Wow harsh responses for a motivational post! Thanks for the tips! Clearly you've had success so maybe some will benefit from the same routine!

    I don't see any harshness. Please don't confuse harshness with disagreement. It's great to offer suggestions to help people, but others have the right to disagree with the claims.
  • joejccva71
    joejccva71 Posts: 2,985 Member
    This is the most ridiculous advice I've ever seen.
  • Rachiepie6
    Rachiepie6 Posts: 423 Member
    Just adding to "My Topics"
    Sorry to not add value to the post.
  • babyblake11
    babyblake11 Posts: 1,107
    i agree that there are some questionable facts here.

    and its mostly based on assumtions.