Most of the people who regularly exercise, are hit by a plateau in their performance. Much to the frustration, this also leads to demotivation for many. Let’s read how to deal with it and eventually come out of it – by GAURAV TANEJA.
When you start lifting weights, you are indeed happy to see the growth, strength and the progress you make. The progress is important and keeps you going .This motivates you and you give your 100 % to your workout. However ,over a period of time ,you enter a phase where, you just stop seeing any results.
This kills your enthusiasm, and demotivates you a lot. Sometimes to an extent that you feel like quitting. Despite your best efforts and discipline, you can’t see any results.
Data shows that most of the people who sign up at the gym, discontinue within 4 months. Any ideas WHY ? Yes, because you stop seeing results.
For a newbie, its easy to see the change. A new comer can follow any diet or any training programme and yet his body responds, because any training/diet programme is a new to his body. After a while, like anything else, your body adapts to the resistance and stops responding.
Our bodies are made for survival. The survival instincts kicks in very quickly. When the resistance becomes bearable to the body, your body will send a signal to your brain.. ‘hey, lets stop adding more muscle, we have enough muscle to handle the load this guy puts on us everyday”
Maintaining muscle mass, is a lot of work on human body. Even professional bodybuilders including myself face similar issues. This is where you need to understand that you have hit a PLATEAU.
So whats the Solution ??? CHANGE !!
Yes, you need to make a change in your training or diet or both. But many people fall prey to changing their programme upside down, which is usually not required.
1) TAKE MORE REST – yes, you heard it right, most of the time, the issue is not undertraining, but overtraining. If you are training 6 days a week, try doing 5 days a week. If you are doing 18 sets per body part, make it 14. Reduce your time in the gym. Lift hard, heavy, intense make it a high intensity workout.
Most of the Natural athletes need time to recover from the strenuous lifting.
2) TRY 5X5- 10-12 rep range is the best muscle building range. But sometime you need to switchthings up. More strength means more muscle and more muscle equals more strength. This is catch 22. Chicken came first or the egg.
10-12 rep range is undoubtedly a better muscle building rep range, however you need to take advantage of everything available to you. Each rep range hits a diﬀerent type of muscle fibre. Training in the 5 rep range with heavy range will give you more strength, and when you go back to 10-12 rep range you will be able to hit those muscle fibres with extra weights.
3) USE CREATINE- This is the most underrated supplement in the market. No company wants tomarket it. Reason- its cheap and it works. The good old creatine monohydrate is the king of supplements. It usually falls in the price range of INR 400-700, however it is not marketed well. NOTHING WORKS LIKE GOOD OLD CREATINE. Add 5 gms to your post workout shake. Forget everything else.
4) Eat More Fats- Most of us relate bodybuilding to onlyprotein and carbs. Fats is what builds nucleus of your cell. You cannot build new cells without the essential fatty acids (EFA’s). EFA’s cannot be produced by the body and have to be consumed through external sources. EFA comes under your omega 3,6 and 9 fatty acids.
If you are a heavy lifter, I recommend 3g of fish oil, 2g of primrose oil daily.