Have you met your limit in your workout regime? Day in and day out you hit the gym, but are not feeling it anymore? This means you’ve hit a plateau, but do not fear. There are ways, with determination, to jump over hurdles and dig yourself out of a rut.
A training plateau could mean you have stopped being able to add weights to your reps, or maybe you’ve stopped gaining muscle and simply are not seeing any more results. This can bring you down and hinder motivation. Just know, it’s perfectly normal for our bodies to acclimate to the stress we put on during weight or boxing training.
Frustration or confusion as to why you are not progressing could cause you to completely stop trying. Don’t do that! There’s always solutions and we’ve got plenty to share. Here are just a few tips to get you back on your feet and feeling pumped again.
Make strategic changes to your training program.
You need to switch up your workout routine. If all you’re doing is leg presses for legs, machines for chest, and pull-downs for your back, add in more squats, deadlifts, bench presses, and overhead presses. Or, choose a new rep range. Write it down and map it out. If you are consistently doing 3-5, 6-8, or 9-12 reps, try 13-15 and up. If you consistently do 1×4, 1×6 and 1×8, switch it up and do 1×6, 1×4 and 1×8. Or, try adding less weight and make a massive increase in reps. The slightest bits of change will shock your body and make it respond again.
Explore Superset Training.
When it comes to fitness the mantra “less is more” is helpful, especially when doing Supersets. According to Men’s Fitness, a superset is when one exercise is done immediately after another, with no rest time in between. After one Superset is done, a rest or recovery time of one and a half to two minutes is taken. Not only will this cut your workout time in half, it will keep your heart rate up during the whole workout, so you’re burning fat faster.
Mix in Cardio with Strength Training.
Even adding walking to your weightlifting or boxing program could help you overcome your plateau. Interval training is a way to shock your body, like we talked about before, so that you see beyond your rut. Instead of walking for 30 minutes at a consistent pace, an interval training approach would be walking for 30 minutes, changing speed and incline every 1 to 3 minutes. Make sure if you choose a certain cardio program to change it up every 4-6 weeks, so you don’t hit another plateau. The key to all of this is change.
Step outside of your boundaries and try something new.
If all you’ve been doing is going to the gym at the same time every day, doing the same routine every day…well of course you’re going to plateau. This is basically how muscle memory is created. Use new muscles and you’ll feel a difference immediately. Easy ways to do this is by trying a new class, such as kickboxing or sparring. Or meet with a personal trainer and have a whole new exercise program developed for you. Learning different techniques and stepping outside of the box is one of the best ways to boost results.
Tire muscles at different times.
If you start with legs, and then move onto working out your back, then go onto arms typically, move your pattern around. Trust us, push-ups will seem a lot harder at the end of your workout if you usually do them in the beginning or middle. Remember to work your larger muscles first always to avoid injury.
These are just a few of the tips we offer, and we encourage you to send us your comments for other tips. Remember to stay positive. The glass is always half full when it comes to fitness. Humans are happier when they make progress. You’ll find that with a little, or a lot, of change you will start to put on even more muscle and shed some fat in the process.
With an open mind, hard work, and a solid game plan your plateau will be last month’s news. Once you overcome your obstacles, you’ll find you can transition back to your regular training program and be amazed at your body’s reaction.