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those pesky plateaus can't stop us...

Enjoy the Video: Dr. Allison Grupski on plateaus

the 4 pillars of Weight Watchers

Every week we cover a new topic that fits under one of these categories:

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Love it or leave it


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WW Members Robin and Vicki

This week's Workshop topic:

how do i get past a plateau?

three fast facts

/01 A plateau is when you don’t lose weight for a few weeks in a row.

/02 Changes in eating or activity habits are two of the most common causes of a plateau.

/03 Sometimes the reason for a plateau isn’t clear.

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what is a

weight-loss plateau?

A weight-loss plateau is when your weight stops changing. Being stuck at a weight-loss

plateau eventually happens to everyone who tries to lose weight. Even so, most people are surprised when it happens to them because they're still eating carefully and exercising regularly. The frustrating reality is that even well-planned weight-loss efforts can stall.

Tips from the Mayo clinic along with our own team will help you not allow a plateau lead to an avalanche!

WW Member, Lindsey

don't get discouraged by a weight-loss plateau

You've been working hard to follow your healthy, WW Point budget and you've improved your exercise habits. Your rewards have been watching your weight go down and feeling better. Now, however, for no reason you can identify, the scale has stopped budging. You've hit a weight-loss plateau. There's a lot we can do but first things first, speak with your Coach. And Don't get discouraged! It's typical for weight loss to slow and even stall.

By understanding what causes a weight-loss plateau, you can decide how to respond and avoid backsliding on your new healthy habits.

WW Members, Bieke and Stephanie

what causes a weight-loss plateau

During the first few weeks of losing weight, a rapid drop is typical. In part, this is because when you lose weight, your metabolism slows, causing you to burn less energy than you did at your heavier weight. Your slower metabolism will slow your weight loss, even if you eat the same as you did losing weight. When the energy you burn equals the Points you eat, you reach a plateau.

To lose more weight, you need to either increase your physical activity or speak with your Coach about changing up your particular plan!

Using the same approach that worked at first may maintain your weight loss, but it won't lead to more weight loss. Remember, good things are happening to your body that doesn't always show up on the scale!

WW Members Mallory and Justine

how to overcome a weight loss plateau

When you reach a plateau, you may have lost all of the weight you will lose on your current food and exercise plan. Ask yourself if you're satisfied with your current weight or if you want to lose more.

WW Members, Robin, Sabrina and Vicky

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If you want to lose more weight, you'll need to adjust your weight-loss plan. Remember your Coach is there to help!

If you're committed to losing more weight, try these tips for getting past the plateau:

five snippets to help you get past the plateau !

Just because your weight loss has stalled, don't revert to bad habits.

These tips can help you re-energized!

0/1 reassess our habits

Look back at your food and activity records. Make sure you haven't loosened the rules. For example, look at whether you've been having larger portions, eating more processed foods, getting less exercise or stopped tracking. Research suggests that off-and-on loosening of rules contributes to plateaus.

WW Member, Sam

0/2 change up our plan

Review your WW plan with your Coach. You may take a re-look at ZeroPoint™ foods to add more satisfaction to your day; unlimited ZeroPoint foods help keep us satisfied while leaving room for meals with Points. We may want to lower our daily budget, raise our exercise plan or get in touch with ourselves through our App. All may be enough to keep you from constant hunger, which increases your risk of overeating chips, nut mixes, candy, etc, "the foods at hand become the foods in hand!"

WW Members, Laura and Sam

0/3 rev up our workouts

Get at least 150 minutes of moderate aerobic activity or 75 minutes of vigorous aerobic activity a week, or a combination of moderate and vigorous activity. Guidelines suggest that you spread out this exercise during the course of a week. For even greater health benefit and to assist with weight loss or maintaining weight loss, at least 300 minutes a week is recommended. Adding exercises such as weightlifting will increase our muscle mass.

WW Member, Sabrina

0/4 pack activity into your day

Think outside the gym. Think outside! Spring is upon us! (Gee, we hope it's not snowing when you get this🙃) Increase your general physical activity throughout the day. For example, walk more and use your car less, do more yardwork, or get to that looming spring cleaning. Any physical activity will help you feel more positive about your healthy changes!

WW Member, Casandra

0/5 don't let a weight-loss plateau lead to an avalanche

If your efforts to get past a weight loss plateau aren't working, talk with your WW Coach about other tactics to try. If you can't further decrease your weight nor can you increase your physical activity, you may want to revisit your weight-loss goal. Appreciate the weight you've lost. Maybe the number you're striving for is unrealistic for you.

Because you've already improved your diet and increased your exercise, you've already improved your health. If you're overweight or obese, even modest weight loss improves chronic health conditions related to being overweight.

Whatever you do, don't give up and go back to your old eating and exercise habits. That may cause you to regain the weight you've lost.

Celebrate your success and continue to do all the good things to maintain your weight loss.

WW Member, Mireille

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Our updated, uncomplicated weight-loss program makes it easier for you to reach success. Every member gets a tailored Points Budget and streamlined list of over 200 ZeroPoint foods.

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Dear WW Philadelphia Member,

One thing many of us know is, if we aren’t feeling confident about what the scale is going to say, we’d rather not know. Something that can be hard to see on the scale is an unexpected plateau; or even a gain.

Why does that happen?

There are many reasons. Sometimes it's about what we ate yesterday, "was it a little saltier than usual?" Or "did I eat a little more added sugar than usual?" Both cause our bodies to retain a little extra fluid. Even eating a lot of good carbs (complex) can cause temporary weight gain.

These situations might look like a plateau when a loss was expected.

Here’s what one professional with lots of letters behind her name said about plateaus:

"The reasons for a weight-loss plateau are as yet un-clearly delineated,

but as people lose weight, they lose muscle mass in addition to fat and water,

which results in a lower metabolic rate.

In addition, at their new lower body weight,

they burn fewer calories doing the same physical activity."

So, a plateau might happen because we’ve done a great job of weight loss but maybe need a little more activity to rebuild lost muscle. Remember the importance of a little strength training. Studies have shown the benefit of weight training, with small weights, is beneficial to even the most sedentary and the very elderly. 

If you have already attended your Workshop this week, you heard from many other Members. Plateaus are a normal part of a weight-loss journey. Most of us experience a plateau sometime during the process.

My thought: I’m not that happy with the word plateau, it makes me feel like a failure. I’d rather call it:

An unplanned week of maintenance.

There, that feels better!


Have a great week WW friend, stay well and be kind,


Deb Wright

General Manager

Voice of Philadelphia

A little dose of Marilyn for the week ...

In a letter to her Members in the fall of 2017

our founder, Marilyn Price Birnhak gave us this tidbit to think on. It is still quite relevant, today--especially when this week's Workshop topic is about those frustrating plateaus:

"If you can remember a time when you wanted something special that you had to work hard to achieve--how long did it take? Was it worth it? 

Losing weight may take more time than you expected." 

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the WW 4 Pillars of weight loss success

WW Member, Naomi

4 weeks to a healthier you ...

A lot can happen in a month!

food: learn more >

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read how exercise today

affects you tomorrow

activity: learn more>

WW Member, Laura

how to get past a weight-loss


mindset: learn more >

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pillow talk: how to sleep better (and feel better too!)

sleep: learn more >

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