When you find a workout you absolutely love, it can be hard not to sign up for the same class every single day. But, as much as you low-key want to ask your favorite SoulCycle instructor to run away and elope with you, your body needs a little variety every now and then. So, to avoid an annoying fitness plateau, it's important to know just how to mix up your workout routine.
Elite Daily reached out to personal trainer Greer Rothermel to get her professional opinion on changing things up in the weight room to keep your body guessing.
Mixing up your workout routine is the best way to make sure your body doesn't hit a plateau, and you continue to see results from all the hard work you're putting in at the gym. Keeping your body guessing during workouts allows your metabolism to stay up, so you're still getting the same effect and results [as when you started].
I'm sure you know how it is. You're immersed in a kickass routine that totally works for you, then all of a sudden, the #gains come to a halt.
It's annoying AF, but honestly pretty cool when you think about it, because the lack of progress you're making shows how smart your body actually is. Your body adjusts to your favorite sweaty routine after just a few weeks, and it starts to master what you've been training it to do. Essentially, your brain learns how to best use the muscles needed for your workout, and it's your job to trick your noggin into learning new exercises and movements to foster growth in your overall fitness routine.
So, here are five ways to switch it up during your next sweat sesh to give both your brain and body a little bit of a new challenge.
1. Increase The Intensity
The American College of Sports Medicine recommends one to three sets of eight to 12 reps when it comes to strength training.
But if that becomes too monotonous and easy for your muscles, it's time to increase the intensity -- more reps, less problems!
2. Try A New Workout Class
Signing up for a new workout class can be a great way to snap your brain out of its fitness rut.
Instructors and trainers always know how to push your body in the right ways, and being in a class with other people might even provoke a little healthy competition, which may work you in ways you wouldn't when you're solo.
3. Slow Down
When it comes to fitness, you might be stuck in a go-go-go mentality. But slowing down could be the major key you need to continue seeing progress in your results.
Whether this means taking more rest days for yourself, switching up the days you train certain body parts, or even stopping the HIIT circuits and starting up with heavier weights, your body will appreciate the change.
4. Ditch The Treadmill (Or Hop On It)
If you're a self-proclaimed cardio junkie, it's time to briefly break up with the treadmill. A little more strength training will do wonders for a pesky plateau.
But the same goes for people who avoid cardio like the plague. Including one or two days of heart-healthy activity might be just what you need to trick your comfortably adapted body back into working toward your goals.
5. Target Different Body Parts
When your body gets too comfortable in a routine, rip off the fuzzy blankets and surprise it with something it's not used to.
This might mean training muscle groups that you absolutely hate and therefore always neglect. When you train one thing too often, it could cause an imbalance in other muscle groups.
Balance out those babies by throwing in some spunky new moves you've never tried before. And if you suck at them at first, practice makes perfect, right?