4 Ways To Keep Getting StrongerAug 22, 2018
You are in the best shape of your life. Your weekly progress is incredibly self-motivating (and probably provides you plenty of Instagram material, am I right?). So, what’s more frustrating than when all of a sudden you stop seeing differences in your physique, despite continued discipline in all things fitness?!
This can be a victorious moment, if you assess your strategy. Sometimes all it takes is a few key changes to get back on the upswing. Here’s how:
1. SAME OLD, SAME OLD
Take a look at your workout. Is it still challenging? Olympic feats become easy routine after you build strength and endurance – so you must essentially “shock” your body into new growth. Introduce harder or completely different exercises into your circuits.
Add a work-out day or two in the week, or change the order of your routines throughout. Make your reps longer, or more intense and varied. Switch up the tempo or the rest periods in between sets. Your body will rise to the occasion!
2. BACK OFF
It’s almost automatic to assume you aren’t working hard enough and increase your efforts. However, it IS possible to over train.
Hyper production of cortisol, a stress hormone, can be caused by over training and may lead to adrenal fatigue. To boot, high levels actually work against muscle regeneration and increase muscle protein breakdown. Talk about a slippery slope of frustration and failure!
Signs this may be you: fatigued, sleep deprived, illness (constant colds), experiencing pain, or feeling undernourished. Familiar? There’s a great chance that you are overdoing it, and need to back off! Try decreasing amount of reps, or amount of days in the gym, and correct your health.
The only thing more discouraging than no results is INJURY so don’t play games!
3. YOU ARE WHAT YOU EAT
What you choose to eat either lays the foundation for your progress, or can totally undermine it. Yes, duh. However, it’s easy to get stuck in a such a systematic rut. As your mass grows, your dietary needs to evolve as well. Listen to your body and respond!
Are you consuming enough protein? If there’s a stalemate between you and your muscles, try upping caloric intake to provide more “material” for your body to work with. Start with an extra egg at breakfast, protein shake in between meals and chicken breast for dinner to see if the additional boost is the trick.
Further demands require more care. This means extra hydration, more post crush session recovery and extra rest, friend. Need we repeat? SLEEP is non-negotiable. Regardless of your superhero shape, you are not a machine. “Yes, I am,” you say. Fine. Even machines have OFF buttons.
Sleep is where restoration and healing occurs. In fact, this one practice alone may be the cause of your plateau, and may be the only thing that needs fixing! When you sleep, a growth hormone is released, allowing for repair and regeneration of not only your muscular system, but your brain function.
After all, your body will do what your mind tells it to!
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