Have you ever begun exercising with a particular weight goal or body type in mind? At first you start to see all these results. Your clothes may be fitting differently and your body is becoming more defined. You are pleased with the results and love the way your body is changing. You may have even bought new clothes to show off your new look, and then “IT” happens!
Gradually you aren’t seeing the results that you first saw. Next thing you know you have become discouraged and want to quit, but DON’T!!! You just experienced a PLATEAU. A plateau is when the body adjusts to the stresses applied to it so that the required tasks become easier. On your way to a plateau you may begin to see improvements in your body because of the transition it is making.
The reason you stop seeing results is because your body has adjusted and is no longer challenged to do the same activities that once were hard. How do you get past a plateau you ask? Well, the first thing you must do is challenge the body again. You need to add more stress, whether it is by increasing your cardio, intensity, or amount of resistance. You need to challenge the body, because it is this challenge that actually yields results.
Not sure on how to take it to the next step? Try these suggested tips:
- FREQUENCY – Exercise at least 3x/week. Exercising (cardio) more than 5 times may not greatly improve your level of fitness if you are doing the same thing every day. Your results greatly depend on the amount of effort you put in. With resistance training you can alternate different body parts different days of the week. Try to get in a total of 3 hours per week.
- HEART RATE – If your heart rate isn’t within its most optimal range then you need to either bring up the speed or resistance. For strength training, if the body isn’t being challenged or overloaded you will not see substantial results. This overloading is what gives you those arms of steel, and those beach-body abs.
- INTENSITY – Try interval training. Work at a low intensity for a couple of minutes and increase to a high intensity for a couple of minutes, and repeat. If you use a heart rate monitor, be sure your average heart rate for your exercise sessions vary from day to day. Try to push it to the max effort. As you become more accustomed to exerting yourself in this manner, you may even want to try longer intensity intervals or cutting down on recovery time.
- METABOLISM – Get you metabolic rate tested. As you exercise and start to lose weight your metabolism changes as you change. You need to feed your body enough to function and lose the weight, but keeping your intake too low for too long will actually cause the opposite effect your looking for. Your body goes into self-protection mode and slows down your metabolism even more. AMP Fitness can help you find your personal number to keep things moving in the right direction. Call us to set up an appointment to schedule your metabolic test today.
Don’t be afraid to try new things. Always challenge yourself, and remember to keep it fun. Hopefully these ideas will bring something fresh to your workout routines. AMP Fitness is always open to other people’s thoughts. Feel free to leave comments or add your own suggestions.