Pla-teau: a state of little or no change following a period of activity or progress.
1. Workout 3+ times per week. During a typical week I workout 5-6 days for about a 30 minutes per day! I don't have a set number of days per week I work out. I listen to my body; if I feel like I need a recovery day I take it.
2. Increase weight (Overload principal)
3. Cross train. Don't do the same exercise modality each day. Try doing a combination of high intensity cardio, endurance and resistance training each week. If you like machines switch on an off between the treadmill, stair stepper, bike and elliptical. Don't just spin for days. You may even need to mix things up and try a Boot Camp at your local gym or switch programs for a week or two.
4. Going along with number three, up your intensity 2-3 days per week (high intensity cardio). And increase the amount of time you workout the days in between (endurance or resistance).
5. Stretch and foam roll frequently. Your body may become fatigued and may cause you to slow down. Make sure you take time to tend to your sore muscles. If you don't allow them to recover properly with stretching and foam rolling your gains won't increase and you likely injure yourself.
6. Switch up your diet. I can't tell you how many times I've tweeked my diet. I've finally figured out how to coordinate my diet with my workouts each day to provide the most beneficial energy source and outcomes. Diet is crucial so if you're feeling like you've reach a plateau re-evaluate your meal plan!
7. Start working out with someone stronger than you. If you've been on your individual fitness program for 6 weeks and your feeling a plateau coming on, find someone stronger than you to be your workout buddy. They'll push you to the limits you couldn't do by yourself. Not only that, they'll be able to spot you on heavy lifts too!
8. Start counting your calories again. When we get into the groove of our fitness programs we don't need to count calories all the time because it just becomes habit. However, if you haven't counted in a while it may be time to check how many you're consuming each day. It's very likely you're not consuming enough for the energy you're expending.
9. Are you drinking enough water? Up your water consumption if you're feeling that sluggish plateau. Water makes up around 80% of our cells providing for the proteins and glycogen. If you're not drinking enough your body may not be functioning properly to recover.
10. Sleep. This may seem like an obvious one, but so many of us don't get enough of it! This is the time for your body to recover. If you're not getting 6-7 hours of adequate sleep then of course you're going to feel the plateau.