How Routine is Your Workout Routine?

09/27/2013 at 4:30 AM Leave a comment

As I looked around the club today, I saw members walking on the treadmill (same as they have for years), lifting on the weight machine circuit (same as they have for years), and doing abdominal crunches (same as they have for years). That’s great, right? Consistency? Well, not all of the time.

hamster wheelI have always told new clients that the best thing they can do is make their exercise program a routine or life habit. But, what I meant was that you want to get to the point where going to the club at ______ o’clock, Monday, Wednesday, and Friday is a habit that you no longer have to convince yourself to do each time. It’s just what you do.

Where this goes wrong is when what you do in the club never changes. The exercises never change and you keep the same weights and/or intensity. This is when the plateau hits. What confuses me is that many will keep plugging away with their routine, never seeming to be phased by it. Is it me projecting my personal goals and hopes for them? Are they happy where they are?

If you’re one of those individuals that have been at it for a while and you would like to see more results happen, here are some tips on getting some variety and jump starting new results:

1) If you’re a class taker, take a different class. You may surprise yourself by how much you enjoy a new style and the people who are participating in it.

2) Change your strength training exercises. Focus on multi-joint (compound) movements to get more bang for your buck.

3) Change your repetition range. If you’ve been using a 10 rep set, try going for 15 at a slightly lighter weight or go heavier and shoot for 7 reps.

4) Raise your resistance more rapidly. Whatever repetition number you choose, 7, 10, 12, 15… it’s not about reaching it and staying there. If you can reach that number in perfect form, raise your weight! Not by a lot. But by the smallest increment you can. Then, next workout, if you can hit that number again (in perfect form), raise it again. The number is not a place to hang out. It is a graduation number. You do it, you graduate to the next level.

5) Cut your rest between sets down. While you may find that you are not as strong with a shorter rest, it will keep your metabolism higher, longer.

6) Superset. As with cutting down your rest time, supersetting (working one movement the immediately working the opposing movement i.e. a push followed by a pull) decreases the rest time and keeps the metabolism higher.

7) Work with a certified personal trainer. Of course this is the way to really get a workout that is customized to your specific needs and get you off that plateau. Don’t be afraid to try it.

So, if you want more results from your workout, it needs to change. The same workout you’ve been doing is not going to take you to the next level.

Let me know what you’re going change and how it works for you.

MN

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