We all have training plateaus, they are just a part of making progress. So, the question becomes how do you blast past your training plateaus so you can achieve that next level?
What Really Is A Training Plateau Anyway?
A plateau is a leveling off point or a sticking point where progress has been halted or dramatically slowed.
What Causes A Training Plateau?
There are several possible causes that we will cover below.
- Over Training: Over training usually means to much volume. If you take weight training as an example: One set taken to complete momentary muscular failure can have a far greater effect on muscular hypertrophy than 10 sets at a medium intensity.
There is an old saying in the gyms that goes like this: “You can train long or you can train hard”. “But, you can’t train long and hard.”
In fact the ten sets will more than likely be too much and will constitute over training.
Then you have to look at training frequency. How often are you training.
Your body including your muscles, central nervous system and more need time to recover from your brutal workout you put them through. If you really trained to momentary muscular failure on every work set (sets after warm up), then you’re going to need a week or so to recover.
You need to realize that when you stop being sore from your workout that just means you’ve cleaned and or buffered all the lactic acid. You still need time to grow new lean tissue so that you’ll be bigger and stronger next time.
For serious drug free weight training shoot for training each body part once per week. You can adjust that up or down after you’ve done that for 3 months and have some real progress to judge from.
Just don’t be surprised if you actually need MORE time off to recover instead of less.
If you’re running or cycling then you would do your best ever run time once per week for short or middle distance running. Yes, you go out and set a new personal best time every single week.
Then you give your body plenty of time to recover and add new lean tissue.
If you’re a long distance runner you do the same thing but you may need more recovery time.
The logic is simple: if you want to get better at your activity, then you should get better at your activity each and every training session.
By training in this manner you’ll limit over training and maximize stimulus, recovery and growth.
- Inadequate Nutrition: You absolutely must eat properly for your sport.
You need to get the bulk of your calories from real whole foods. If you think that sports drinks, protein or carb bars are a great source of calories you’re going to have a seriously hard time exceeding your goals.
You need real foods, from the earth, that are not man made to build your natural body.
Do the needed research to ensure that you’re eating properly for your sport and eat the bulk of your calories from real whole foods.
Yes, you can use some supplements. But, they should not make up the bulk of your diet.
- Under Training: This won’t likely apply to you because you’re reading on a site called Insane Fitness USA, not Wimps R Us.
To avoid under training you simply have to ensure you’re providing enough stimulus to cause your body to change and adapt to your training.
- Lack Of Rest: This really means you’re not getting enough sleep. You need to get your full 8 hours per night of sleep if you really want to make improvements.
This is one you already know, so there’s no sense harping on it. Just be sure to get enough sleep.
To Blast Past Your Training Plateaus
To blast right past them, follow what we discussed above and you’ll be back to making gains in no time.