We humans can be a funny sort, we are very much creatures of habit. We tend to attend the same aerobics classes each week or the same run route on the same day each week. Our bodies have a memory and “get used” to what its about to do. Therefore progress and change can be very hard. The aim is to keep the brain and body guessing all the time. I never do the same work out on the same day each week, so my body never knows whats about to come.
Changing it up means:
- less boredom
- burns more calories
- helps break through weight-loss plateaus (even if your strict on your diet)
- prevent over use injuries (I know this one, through my 3 day a week boxing routines! Trust me takes a lot of time and de-training to get over!)
- build new muscle
- use and recruit more muscles we may be continually miss training
- keeps your brain active and prevents memory loss
- helps you enjoy exercise more rather than feel like a chore for some
- and can help you meet new people
So how can you change up your routine?
Even if your goals are building shape or size, your body adapts after about 4-6 weeks, so minimal progress is made. In order to continue to progress, see and make change you can do some of the following:
- add heavier weights with less repetitions
- do an after set, so after weights try using a resistance band that’s lighter and do more repetitions than your weight sets
- increase intensity
- throw in some super-sets, back to back exercises before resting instead of the standard 3 sets
- run further than normal and include hills rather than flat ground, try trail running
- throw in sprints during runs, change your sprint days each week and the time frames, try Fartlek training or do 40 sec intervals instead of 30 sec, or do a range of times, keep that body guessing!
- change up the days each week you train lower body, upper body, core, etc
- add resistance bands instead of weights all the time, for example, do push-ups with a resistance band across your shoulders and back. That way, the difficulty will increase as you push up, forcing your chest, shoulder, and tricep muscles to engage.
- change up the actual exercises
- mix it up with body weight training such as squats, squat jumps, decline push ups
- change the number of days you train each week
- change the order of your exercises
- change your rest days
That’s to name a few! By doing this with your regular workouts, you will encourage the best results for the goals you want to achieve.
So, now to plan what you will do next week! Then next week what will you do the week after?