How often should you change your workout routine? Have you ever wondered how long it takes your body to begin to plateau, and therefore cause your workouts to be less effective? Or have you asked yourself does that really happen, or is it just an old wives tale?
The truth is, yes, your body does hit a plateau after a certain period of time. While there is not a set period of time that it takes for your body to transition from new workout routine to plateau, it is recommended that you change your workout routine every 4 – 8 weeks. This is important not only to keep your body from hitting a plateau, but also to keep things interesting for you and to ensure that you don’t get bored with your workouts. When you do the same workout routine for months at a time and don’t change the order, it causes your body to adapt to its surroundings. It will become habit and routine for your body to perform those certain exercises in that same order, which in turn causes you to lose the benefits of training.
As you begin a new workout routine, things will be different, and it should, initially, be a little more difficult than expected. This is because your body had become accustomed to your previous routine and is now having to adjust to the new routine. Another reason to change your workout routine is because your old one has just become too easy. When you’re able to perform the workouts with ease and they simply are not as straining as they once were, you’ve got a sure sign that you have hit a plateau and should think about changing to a new workout routine. Changing routines gives you a fresh start and can help keep you motivated to work out, especially during these cold winter months when it can be easier to curl up at home with a blanket and just be lazy. You will get that extra energy and feeling of wellbeing that you’ve been searching for.
One last important part of plateaus and changing workout routines is rest. It seems like this can sometimes be a swear word to some people at the gym and they think that rest is for the weak. But the truth is that well-timed and well-placed rest can really help motivate you and encourage muscle growth. One example is to take off 3 – 4 days straight every 6 weeks and don’t go to the gym at all, just rest. Every time you change your workout routine (6 weeks), you take those few needed days of rest. Then every 12 weeks, or 2 workout routines, take off 1 full week to recover and rest your body and muscles, but also to refresh, invigorate, and motivate your mind and prepare you for another great 12 weeks of exercise.