What to do when your exercise program plateaus

Published 3:40 pm Friday, July 9, 2010

One problem most people who workout experience from time to time is the dreaded exercise plateau.

For those of you who dont know what this is you start an exercise routine, and everything seems great. Youre losing weight. Youre motivated. You feel like youre on the right track, when all of a suddenNOTHING. You stop losing weight. You still work out, but you dont feel like you are getting fitter.

Thats an exercise plateau, and boy, is it frustrating.

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Today, Im going to help you unstick your routine so you can make real progress again. First, let me explain why we sometimes reach a plateau. Exercise plateaus are based on the theory of adaptation. Simply put, when your body is presented with a new exercise, it is stimulated, or shocked, if you will, by the experience. Your body then adapts by getting stronger, and more fit in response to this exercise stimulus.

When your body no longer perceives the stimulus as new, it will not change, in response to the exercise. The first thing to ask yourself if you have reached an exercise plateau, am I working out hard enough?

Exercise should be enjoyable, but at times you need to push yourself. Also, I recommend you change up your exercise routine every four weeks or so.

I constantly change my clients workout routines. In fact I tell them two things:

1) There is no such thing as the perfect exercise program forever.

2) Every exercise I have them do is to get them ready for a new, and different exercise.

To get great results, your exercise routine needs to change and progress. Doing the same exercises day after day is boring, and your muscles get used to it, and stop making progress. Also, its important to know just how, and when to make changes in your workout program.

I recommend getting help from an experienced trainer. It makes all the difference. &bsp;

Another key to losing body fat is to realize that exercise is only part of the equation. Proper nutrition is essential. In fact, in one study, overweight adults who both exercised and managed there caloric intake, lost 66% more body fat than those who exercised or dieted alone.

Got a nutrition or fitness question? Send it to dwcrocker77@gmail.com

David Crocker of Landrum has served as strength director of the Spartanburg Y.M.C.A., strength coach, S.C. state champion girls gymnastic team, USC-Spartanburg baseball team, and Converse college equestrian team. He taught four semesters at USC-Union. David is also a regular guest of the Pam Stone Show. David also served as lead trainer to L.H.Fields Modeling Agency.