So, you started a new workout routine at the gym. You’ve been going religiously, putting in the hard work, eating right, and doing all the right things this time. You seemingly are rewarded as you continue to notice your muscles growing and your strength increasing. Your exercises are getting easier, and you aren’t laid out with that post workout soreness you had the first week or so of your routine. Over time however, you realize no matter how hard you work, nothing is being accomplished. Your muscles stop growing, you stop getting stronger, and you realize all your hard work is now becoming useless. What happened to your muscles? The simple answer: they’re bored.
Consistently doing the same exercises, week after week, will bring you face to face with the notoriously frustrating workout plateau. In order to push past this, you need to continually keep your muscles interested in the work out. How do we accomplish this?
Keep in mind we don’t want to stop working the muscle, we just want to work it in a new way. If you do the same exercise over and over, you will only be stimulating the same muscle fibers. To incorporate new muscle fibers, we want to hit the muscle from different angles.
- Use heavier weights
- Mix up your reps and sets. Example: instead of 3 x 10, try 5 x 5, or 2×15
- Incorporate new exercises. There are literally hundreds of exercises out there, so you shouldn’t feel trapped in your current routine.
- Examine your diet; you may need to consume more protein and carbs. The bigger you get, the more you need to eat to continually grow.
- Take a break. Taking a week or two break after heavy lifting for many months can work wonders for your muscles.