After months of committing to your workout program, you now find that your progress has come to a standstill. Why? If you don’t change your exercise patterns then your body will find an easier way to do them – simply put, you’ve hit a dreaded fitness plateau! Overcoming the plateau will require you to make changes to your workout program, your diet, or both.
Making changes to your workout program by incorporating altogether new exercises is a great way to beat a plateau but it also involves big changes which you may not want to do. Another option is to keep the same program – the very same exercise – but to increase the difficulty of the exercises you are doing. This could be done by adding load (free weights), changing the time limit, or even varying the exercise to change the angle at which you are working the muscles. With respect to the latter option, if you are becoming too efficient at doing the basic push-up (for example), modify the angle so that your toes are on an incline (i.e. an exercise bench or stability ball) – these are called ‘decline’ push-ups and they work your shoulders and upper pectoral muscles more than regular push-ups.
If you find that changing your workout program isn’t addressing the issue, then it may be that your diet is negatively impacting your progress. Not eating enough to fuel your workouts could be hampering your progress or maybe you’re consuming more calories than you’re burning, compromising any weight loss goals you may have.
While some form of change is needed to start seeing more progress, it doesn’t mean that you have to completely revamp your training program and/or your diet. If you think that you might have hit a plateau, we urge you to consider working with a fitness professional to help get you back on track!