Why frequently changing your workouts could be harming your results
A comment we often hear in the gym is...
"I've already done that workout"
"I did that exercise 3 days ago"
The underlying assumption here is that by repeating an exercise or a workout in close succession is somehow negative for your results. When in fact repeating movements frequently and in close succession is one of the most important principles you must apply to your training in order to progress and here's why... Progressive overload.
Progressive overload is when you gradually increase the weight, frequency, or number of repetitions for a given exercise. By doing so challenges your body to adapt and progress (strength, increased muscle tissue etc).
If you vary exercises and movements every workout and do not repeat movements every 2-3 days progressive overload will not be achieved and your body will never progress.
1. Repeat exercises under tension (weight training) every 2-3x day
2. Track your weights and aim to lift 5% heavier each time you repeat a movement
3. Fuel your recovery time between workouts with good nutrition and hydration
4. Go to bed at the same time (earlier the better) and wake at the same time each day - healthy/consistent sleep patterns will aid recovery between workouts
Progressive Overload is a principle we have applied to our programming here at FITISM. We plan all our members training into 13 week cycles (4 cycles per year) written months ahead of time. We then split these cycles into 4 week blocks of training. Week by week we rotate detailed workouts so our members can apply the principle of progressive overload before changing the detailed workouts as we move from block to block. Our app allows our members to track weights so they know what weights they lifted the previous workout to increase for the workouts that follow.
Random workouts will produce random results and significantly reduce your progress. So if progress is your goal (strength, fitness, change in body composition etc) then repeating workouts, movements and exercises frequently and in close succession is essential. When doing so make sure to turn the screw on the weights and/or reps you lift each time you repeat an exercise. Keep doing so as you move through your 4 week training block before your Coach changes your workouts for your next 4 week block of training.
I hope that helps you better understand one of the most important exercise science principles (progressive overload) to help you continually progress.
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