It happens to us all – you’re powering through your workout program for a couple of months and then, out of nowhere, your progress comes to a halt.
Your strength doesn’t seem to go up. Your weight won’t go down. You are doing EVERYTHING right in both the gym and the kitchen but your body appears to be at a standstill.
So, what’s the deal? While evolution has always been in our favor, our bodies ability to adapt to different exercises and training techniques can actually hinder our progress in the gym.
Lucky for you, there are plenty of ways to bust through those frustrating plateaus.
Technique #1: Drop Sets
When it comes to progressing in the gym, the goal is to train your muscles to fatigue, therefore FORCING them to grow.
So, what better way to fatigue your body than by training it until complete failure? Drop sets do just that.
Drop sets can be performed with any exercise. You will first perform reps until failure or near failure, then decrease the weight and go until failure again.
By hitting failure at different weights- you are actually activating MORE muscle fibers than you would during a typical set of say 12 reps.
Technique #2: 1.5 Reps
Not so great at pushing yourself in the gym? Give 1.5 reps a try. 1.5’s require you to combine a partial rep AND a full range rep.
Tension is therefore placed on your muscles for an extended period of time, forcing your them to do more work per movement than what they are used to. Say hello to both strength gains and muscle growth.
Technique #3: Negatives
Negative training, also known as eccentric training, requires you to slowly perform the downward (muscle lengthening) portion of an exercise.
For example, if you are performing negative pull ups- you will begin at the top of the exercise and SLOWLY (anywhere from 3-6 seconds) lower yourself, focusing on fighting gravity the entire way down.
By doing so, you are forcing your muscles to work past their normal point of failure. The result? Faster strength gains, increased mind-to-muscle connection, and a killer burn!