It’s the hardest season of the year to stay healthy in between the holidays, flu season, visiting relatives and the changing weather! You’re watching your calorie intake; your trainer changed up your routine, and you’ve invested in a wearable. At first, you saw some promising results, but now, you’ve hit a plateau and not seeing the progress – or weight loss – one would expect after months of dedication and diligence.
Maybe it’s your metabolism.
Perhaps you’re one of lucky ones gifted with the metabolism of a finely tuned Ferrari – while others are seemingly cursed with that of a sloth. If you belong to the latter group, don’t just chuck it all in and head back to the couch – there are ways to “re-key” the engine and rev up your metabolism. Here’s a few:
1. Eat Breakfast
Eating breakfast jump starts your metabolism – and keeps your energy levels high all day. Of course what you eat for breakfast matters too. Try to look for menu items that are high in protein, fiber and whole grains. A green smoothie, steel cut oatmeal, sugar-free Greek yogurt with fresh fruit, or easy to make hard-boiled eggs with whole grain toast are great options.
2. Eat Enough
Eating less than your body requires to maintain healthy function can backfire. You’ll soon begin to lose hard won muscle – which burns more calories than fat. Graze on healthy foods, or eat small meal throughout the day to keep your body satisfied with high octane fuels.
3. Make Some Muscle
The average woman in her 30s who strength-trains 30 to 40 minutes twice a week for four months can increase her resting metabolism by 100 calories a day.
4. HIIT It
High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT), from sprints on the treadmill, to hitting the heavy bag, adding 30 minutes of HIIT cardio workouts to your routine will really kick your metabolism into high gear.
5. Power Up With Protein
Protein is an essential macronutrient for building muscle. Additionally, it takes more energy (think BMR) to break down than carbohydrates or fat. To build and maintain lean muscle mass, be sure to consume one gram of lean protein per pound of Lean Body Mass (LBM).