Scale Standoff

When the dreaded plateau strikes, here's how to handle it.
Published April 26, 2018

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You're humming along on WW and suddenly the numbers on the scale refuse to budge for two weeks, three weeks, or more. You've hit a weight-loss plateau. Welcome to the club. We've all gone through such discouraging stalls. Knowing that it's "when," not "if," can help us recognize that it's part of the journey. 

Hitting the wall

Typically, a plateau crops up when we loosen our healthy habits—maybe we're winging it a bit more with portions, or haven't been able to track regularly. And we're even kinda, sorta expecting the scale to slow or stop. But then there are times when we are totally on point: tracking, being active, choosing wisely, being mindful—and our weight loss comes screeching to an unexpected halt. And that's totally normal, too. Weight loss progress isn't a neat descending line. It's more accurately a line that goes up, down, and sideways. As you stick with your healthy habits, of course, over time the line edges downward

Making peace with a plateau

It might seem like the last thing you'd want to do, but as WW FreestyleTM weekly explains, accepting that plateaus will happen can help you move on from them. When you're struggling with a plateau, consider the healthy changes you're making with eating, activity, and mindset. And finally, keep in mind that a plateau means you're maintaining!

Get the scale moving

To move past a plateau, take a look at your tracking first: Are you tracking foods with SmartPoints® values—and if so, are you doing it accurately? What about your physical activity? Can you ramp up in time or intensity? It can help with weight loss, especially in tandem with a healthy eating pattern. Look for simple ways to get in more activity: Take the family (or the dog) for an afternoon walk. Park the car farther away, or get off the bus a stop or two away from your destination.