How to Break Through a Fitness Plateau
Updated: Mar 16, 2020
How to break through a fitness plateau: a form of recovery.
It’s possible that you’ve hit the dreaded fitness plateau. What gives? Are fitness plateaus actually real?
A fitness plateau is when your progress comes to a halt. If you haven’t heard of a plateau yet, consider yourself lucky. At some stage, most people will notice a point when progress diminishes, whether it pertains to gaining muscle, increasing endurance, or any combination of the two.
Making progress is an important aspect of motivation, and seeing results will keep you on track towards reaching your goals. This is a big deal when it comes to programming ourselves for success! If you think you’re stuck, there are a few important aspects of your training you can consider:
1) Variety is king. Our bodies are programmed to adapt to change, so if your routine is dialed in perfectly, then you might consider adding something new to the mix. Use this as a rule of thumb: when exercises start to become less challenging over time, they are also simply less effective.
2) Consider your post-workout fuel. What you put into your body post-exercise is very important when it comes to getting the most from your workout. You need a healthy dose of protein and carbohydrates to kick-start the repair process. Read our article from last month to become more informed on post-workout nutrition.
3) Consider the energy you invest. When you come to class, the goal is to get the most from every exercise and every rep, which means every minute counts. It’s pretty simple – the more you feel it, the harder you’re working. Pushing past your comfort zone is a tried-and-true way to move through any fitness plateau.
4) Count up the hours you sleep. Most adults need somewhere between seven and nine hours per night. If you’re pretty active, your body will recover and perform better with closer to nine. Aim for at least 8 hours/night, or if you have a dynamic schedule, make sure you’re getting 55-60 over the course of the week.
5) Cycle your activity levels. Bust your butt one day, then take a rest day the next. The goal is to crank up the intensity and work harder -- longer. Just make sure you take a 24-hour hiatus to let your body regenerate. Not only will you be rested and ready to go, but you might become more focused and intentional when you're exercising.
6) Take a planned recovery week. If none of the above suggestions bust you out of your plateau, try taking some time off. Simply put, your body will have a chance to fully re-set, recover, and you’ll be able to do everything again – but probably better.
Read our class descriptions and consider trying something different, or alternatively, hire a studio trainer to customize your program and you will never get stuck. You can contact the studio and we'll get you all set up!