Despite keeping up with any exercise program, it’s natural to notice a slowdown in your progression including endurance or building muscle. Luckily, it doesn’t have to stay that way.
There are ways around a workout plateau to get back to making progress.
What is it?
A workout plateau happens when your body gets used to the demands of your existing fitness routine, causing your progress to level out.
Over time as you follow a consistent schedule, your body adapts and becomes more efficient, burning fewer calories and building less muscle.
You can also hit a plateau from ineffective or inconsistent training and unhealthy diet and sleep habits.
While these training plateaus are normal, there are a few ways to move forward.
1. Switch up your routine
Change your workouts by altering the intensity and duration. If you usually work at high intensity for short periods, switch it up and swim, row or cycle at a slow speed longer.
Intensify your workouts by lifting heavier weights, adding more reps and limiting rest periods. Throw in Tabata workouts and interval training to push past your existing limits.
2. Try something new
Challenge your body with a new activity like a new sport, weight machine, treadmill or elliptical. You’ll use different muscle groups and movement patterns, which help prevent overuse and injuries.
If you work out alone, join a group class and if you’re usually in a group, try solo workouts. You can also add equipment like resistance bands or ankle weights.
3. Find a professional
Personal trainers can create customized training programs to achieve your goals. They give fresh ideas, insights and feedback and even better, they provide encouragement, motivation and all-important accountability.
A trainer will check your form to improve your mobility and range of motion to reduce your chance of injury.
4. Check your nutrition
Fuel your body properly before and after workouts with healthy foods. If you need to, consult a registered dietitian for healthy snack and meal ideas.