Breaking Through Plateaus

Plateaus are a given during your weight-loss journey, but it is how we look at them that makes all the difference.  

Let’s not think of a plateau as a point in your journey where your body is stuck, but a point in your journey where your body is actually able to maintain its new weight.  Ultimately, when we reach our goal we want to be able to maintain it.  A plateau is showing us that our body is capable of maintaining its new weight.  It’s showing us that we are capable of maintaining our goal once we reach it.  Yes!

However, what if we haven’t reached our goal yet?  How should we break through the plateau?  

Plateaus occur because there is no longer a deficit.  Our energy “in” has equaled our energy “out”.  Often people want to jump right to having their macro numbers lowered.  But what if your numbers are already low?  Do you really want to eat less food?  (Eating even less food can make it hard to stick to the plan!) 

Let’s think about a few other things to help break through your plateau before considering lowering your macro numbers – 

*Are you tracking everything you put in your mouth?  Little bites add up and can put you over your macros causing your progress to slow down.  Also, undereating can tamper with your progress…are you tracking food that you are not actually eating?

*If you are feeling hungry, which is causing you to make questionable food choices, consider increasing foods that have less calories but you can eat more of – for example, spinach, broccoli, tomatoes, and many other veggies – to help you feel full.

*Increasing training sessions during the week – consider increasing the amount or duration of formal exercise during your week

*Consider the intensity of your training sessions – are you able to safely increase the intensity of your training sessions?  Lift heavier weight? Increase reps? Pushing yourself a little bit harder?

*If your schedule does not allow you to add training sessions into your week or increase their duration, consider increasing your movement throughout the day.  For example, parking farther from the store, standing more at work, taking 5-10 minute walks throughout the day, etc.

With a few adjustments, we can break through a plateau and be back on the road to reaching our goals!


-Leslie Benner, Health Coach

Valentine’s Day Cocktails + Alcohol into your Macros

Whether it’s after a long day or week of work, a birthday party or a holiday celebration alcoholic beverages can be involved. A popular question I get quite frequently is, “Can I drink alcohol while counting macros?” The answer is, YES you can – but it’s important to count it into your macros.  

Macronutrients consist of carbohydrates, protein and fat. Calories from alcohol are NOT classified under any of these macronutrients as they are empty calories containing zero essential nutrients. To give you a better a picture on how this looks, if you scan or look up a light beer on My Fitness Pal, it will contain about 95 calories/ 3g carb/0 g fat/ 0g protein. Let’s break this down macros to calories and see if this equals out to 95 calories.


4 calories per 1 gram of carbohydrate

4 calories per 1 gram of protein

9 calories per 1 gram of fat

If the above is calculated out mathematically.. This is what it shows from your light beer.

3 g carbohydrate x 4 calories per gram = 12 calories coming from carbohydrates

95 calories from the light beer – 12 calories = 83 calories that are simply not accounted for within those macros. We have to account for those 83 calories some way into our macros – – – > here’s how to properly track that light beer.

You can track 3 different ways. As a carbohydrate, fat or both carbohydrate AND fat.

Tracking as a carbohydrate: 95 cal / 4 cal/g = 24 g carbohydrate


Tracking as a fat: 9 cal / 9cal/g = 11 g fat


Tracking as a carb + fat = 

Carb = 47.5 cal / 4 cal/g = 12 g carbohydrate

Fat = 47.5 cal / 9 cal/g = 5 g fat

Keep in mind that alcohol contains empty calories so we must account for it as a carbohydrate, fat or both carb + fat. Once you calculate what your usual drink contains, it will become like clockwork! In My Fitness Pal there is a simple way to create drinks or recipes that you can quickly add into your macros without doing the calculations each and every time you want a beverage. Quick add option is available as well! 

**If calculating for a mixed drink, calculate based off of the liquor calories and make sure to add in the mixer. **

Take a Peak at some Macro Friendly Valentine’s Day Cocktails and/or Mocktails!

Love Bug Cocktail

4 oz Red Cranberry Juice (14C, 0.5F, 0.5P)

2 oz Lime LaCroix (0C, 0F, 0P) *Can use diet Lime Soda as well*

1 oz Vodka ~ 64 cal – Tracked as a fat 64 cal/ 9 cal/g = 7 g fat (0C, 7F, 0P)

Lime for Garnish

Add Ice

Total Macros: (14C, 7.5F, 0.5P)

Makes 1 Serving


“Be Mine” – Moscow Mule

2 oz Vodka ~128 cal – Tracked as Carb + Fat – 64 cal/ 9 cal/g = 7g fat & 64 cal / 4 cal/g = 16gC

3 oz Diet Ginger Beer

1 tbsp grenadine – (14C, 0F, 0P)

½ c halved Strawberries (6C, 0F, 0P) – Cut in half, mix in drink

Add Ice & Serve in Copper Cups

Total Macros: (36C, 7F, 0P)

Makes 1 Serving

**Any of the above drinks can be made into Mocktails, simply take out the alcohol.**


Be sure to grab our guides at check out consisting of Travel, Restaurant/Fast Food, How to calculate alcohol and macro cheat sheet! Click here for these guides.

How to Create Sustainable New Years Goals

Here we go, we’re already over halfway through the first month of the new year! Some of us have BIG goals to crush from financial to educational or nutrition/fitness related. No matter what your goal is, is it completely off the wall from your normal routine OR is it something you truly can accomplish and sustain within this New Year?

January is always a busy time for nutrition and fitness programs! All health services are overloaded and diets generally are in full go. Mid spring these services usually slow down or taper off and gyms start to decrease in capacity. Every. Single. Year. 

So let me ask you this? Why not set reasonable goals, goals that you can sustain and have flexibility for a lifetime? I can’t tell you after someone learns I’m a dietitian they start talking to me about a certain “Fad diet” and how they have learned what foods are “good” and “bad.” Conversations usually lead me to saying, “you know, you really can eat all foods in moderation unless you have a medical reason or allergy.” I usually get the confused look and the questions filled with doubt.

You really can eat everything in moderation. That’s sustainability without restriction and let me tell you, I’m here for it. 

Let’s talk about nutrition or fitness goals that look a little different than previous years.

Instead of making a goal to go to the gym 6 times per week when you haven’t exercised ever, try 2 times per week.

Instead of plunging into a Keto or Atkins diet when you love carbohydrate rich foods like fruits, pastas, bread etc., maybe try to incorporate 3 vegetables into your normal diet every single day? It’s a healthier step and not so restrictive. 

Instead of saying I’m never eating out, try limiting restaurant foods to 1-2 times per week?

Instead of saying “No” to pop, try limiting it to 1 beverage per week.

See what I did? I created common goals and switched them to more realistic practices. I think it’s great each of us have big goals for ourselves, however, big goals can not be achieved without creating small, flexible changes first. Being goal oriented and having something to crush is empowering. Just remember, it’s a marathon, not a sprint.


Through our personalized nutrition coaching, you will make sustainable changes that align with your current lifestyle through our flexible, macronutrient-based approach to nutrition. We’ll arm you with a solid nutrition foundation that will help you set goals and create progress you can sustain for a lifetime – not just a quick fix – and provide guidance every step of the way! Click here to “Get Started”.