During a time-defined, focused journey (a twelve-week challenge), there is a segment when the gas pedal needs no pressure, our vessel cruises with highway monotony, and attention detaches from acceleration. Although you cannot take your hand off the wheel, your defined actions are habitual, your speed determined, and the miles pass on their own without tremendous concerted effort.

Danger exists when such stagnation occurs. The commencement of repetitive food intake, exercise routines, and easing the motivation into a lull typically serve as a holding pattern, may create plateau results, and confuse the driver with frustrating failure and the slowing process. Concluding the initial plan lacks sustainability explains the slow down, when perhaps the jammed receptors of the body are simply relaxing into equilibrium.

The status quo is the balance the body achieves with great precision. Working to prevent the body of relinquishing its weight, it attempts a balance of systems, recognizing that it has discovered its perfect response to the calories, movement, and various activity it has been given. All systems are functioning, cycling, and cruising, with maintenance as the next leg of the journey, a settling into comfort.

Unfortunately this result is not the desired outcome, but cruise control communicates differently. Changing one’s response is necessary for optimal success: decreasing and increasing calories, fluctuating carbohydrate and fat macros, alternating exercise routines and their amounts, changing food choices to prevent habitual selections, and alleviating the resting state of the pedal to the metal. One must focus energy towards pushing acceleration, rather than relenting into maintenance. Cruising is stagnation while deepening the force is a destination’s dream.

Determination, perseverance, and dedication to shifting routine, awakens the body to dominate the drive towards surrendering the weight, increasing its muscle, and ascending to a successful concentration of movement towards a driving destination of pounds dropping and kettlebells soaring. Coasting in cruise control is a hazard to a worthy weight loss pursuit. Halting the plateau and shifting the comfort level can be as easy as making a few changes in food choices, exercise amount, increasing weights, and/or altering activity levels. Getting out of the comfort zone and releasing cruise control works the body and revs the engine again for sustainable change.