Lots of you are doing great on the Fast Metabolism Diet: you’re sleeping better, your sugar cravings are banished, you’ve kicked caffeine (yay!), and you’ve got boundless energy. You are dropping pounds and inches too! We’re hearing from some of you, though, that your metabolism is SUPER stuck — maybe you lost weight in the beginning during week one and two, but you feel like you’ve hit a brick wall in your third week. Whoa! What happened? You still feel great, but the needle on the scale isn’t moving anymore. For you guys — and for anyone who wants to kick-start metabolic repair — you need extra help getting over a plateau. Here’s what you can do!
Years of chronic dieting, eating junk food and even just eating the same few meals over and over get your body into a major rut. A huge part of what we’re doing on the Fast Metabolism Diet is clearing the log jam — shaking things up to get your body out of the same old, same old to reboot, renew and repair. Remember: “Confuse it to lose it” applies to the whole 28 days of the Fast Metabolism Diet. So get yourself off that plateau by breaking the routine.
Your body adapts to a new lifestyle pretty quickly. And your metabolism is a creature of habit — it LIKES knowing what to expect every day. So let’s throw it some curve balls!
- Make a fruit cocktail. Have you been eating the same apples and oranges for your Phase 1 fruit? Get crazy! There are more than 25 fruits on that P1 list, and each of them has different nutrients. So don’t let your body get in an apple rut: toss in some melon, berries, and especially the higher-glycemic tropical stuff like papaya, pineapple and mango. Add lime juice to your fruit — it lowers inflammation. Try mint, which relieves gas and bloating.
- Party with plants. Broccoli is great, but you can only eat so much it! Other veggies have different nutrients your body needs. Challenge yourself not to eat the same vegetable twice during the day. And try something new: kohlrabi, fennel, jicama or seaweed. Try cucumbers, which helps smooth cellulite (and who doesn’t want that?) and jicama has lots of fiber and water — great for easing constipation.
- Go fishing. Have you been sticking to chicken for dinner and beef jerky snacks on Phase 2? Try smoked salmon and cucumbers for a snack. Or roast beef and horseradish. And don’t forget fish for dinner! Cod, flounder and halibut are delicious and quick to cook. Halibut is great on the grill, too. Add green and red peppers, asparagus and grilled portabellas.
- Switch up your workouts. If you’ve been doing your cardio in the morning, try doing it in the afternoon, if you can. Instead of the same weight routine at the gym, try something new, like resistance bands or kettle bells. And on Phase 3, don’t forget dry brushing — a simple and amazing detox tool.
- Give yourself an FMD checkup. If you read the book a month ago, grab it again and read about the three phases and four weeks again. Have you been eating within 30 minutes of waking? Have you been eating your correct snacks and dinners? Lots of my clients, upon re-reading the book find they’ve been mixing up which veggies are on which phase, and which fruits belong where.
Tweak the diet
You can also make the diet a little more extreme by choosing certain foods within the phase.
Phase 1: Go for higher-sugar fruits like pineapple and mango. Eat lots of veggies containing cellulose, which helps stimulate fat burn: cucumbers, radish, jicama and celery.
Phase 2: Go heavy on the spices and herbs! Toss them into salads, use spices as a rub for Phase 2 meats and fish. Use plenty of cayenne and lemon to stimulate the pancreas and fire up your taste buds in the process.
Phase 3: Skip the optional starch at dinner. Don’t get so excited about eating healthy fats that you neglect your veggies — eat lots of them in this phase. You need them to kick-start fat burn.
When you lose weight fast, like a lot of people do in Phase 1, you release a huge number of soluble toxins for your liver to process. Dry brushing is great because it gives your liver a helping hand by adding another avenue for detoxification and letting your liver concentrate on burning fat. It’s such a simple thing to do. Read here on how to add dry brushing to your routine. It’s great for Phase 3, but you can do it any time.
If you haven’t asked your doctor to run your labs (Chapter 2 in the book), now is a good time. If your numbers are off, indicating a very slow metabolism, that tells you, you’ll need lots of repair and is extra incentive for improving your health. So even more than weight loss, your body needs this process to get back on track.
Lastly, don’t get discouraged now! If you haven’t lost quite as much weight as you would have liked in the first two weeks, focus on how your body feels — and on the wonderful nutrient-dense foods you’ve been eating. Are you sleeping better? Has your skin cleared? Is your hair shinier and stronger? And is your mood more stable, more content?
Even when your weight is holding steady on the diet, you’re still experiencing major metabolism repair. You’re retraining your body to extract nutrients more efficiently so you can have normal biochemical and psychological responses to life. Weight loss is just another pleasant side effect to having a fast metabolism.
So don’t stop now! Your body needs that full 28-days to reboot and renew. Your body hasn’t yet made it through the whole repair cycle yet. Would you take your clothes out of the washing machine before the rinse cycle? Would you sit up in the middle of emergency surgery and say “Hey Doc, I think that’s enough for today.” Of course you wouldn’t! So don’t quit now – we’re not done yet!