How to Bust Through a Plateau

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We’ve all been there. You go week after week crushing your workouts, adding more weight to the bar, pushing through sets and reps. You think you’re invincible, nothing can stop you and then it happens. Your progress seemingly comes to a halt. Weeks go by but the weight doesn’t go up. Your sets and reps remain the same. You start losing motivation. Don’t worry about it, it happens to the best of us and luckily, it’s easy to get out of it.

First off, you need to make sure that you actually are stuck in a plateau, if you just go through one week without increasing the weight, that’s not a plateau. However, if weeks go by without any progress, then follow these simple steps.

Increase Calories

This is the best and easiest way to improve your progress. If you’re not progressing in the gym, chances are that you are just not getting enough fuel to bust through that plateau. Increase your daily calorie intake by 250-500 calories, specifically, carbohydrate calories and you will find that you have a lot more energy to power through.

Just make sure not to go overboard with the calories and use your plateau as an excuse to pig out. If you eat crap, you will perform like crap. Eat more of healthy complex carbohydrates to fuel your workouts.

Increase frequency

If you find that you are plateauing in a particular lift, i.e, bench press, squat, deadlift, etc, consider training that muscle group twice a week rather than just once. Split your workout into a heavier day with fewer reps and a lighter day with more reps. This split will ensure that you target that muscle from all angles, which will help to build strength and size in that muscle. After a couple weeks of training this way, you will find that your strength will have increased significantly, just make sure to rest properly between these workouts, leave at least 24-48 hours of rest between them and make sure you are eating enough!

Take some time off

If all else fails, just back off. If you truly believe that you’ve been pushing it day in and day out, eating enough and still not getting any results, chances are that your muscles just need to rest and recover.

Rest that particular muscle group for a week or two and you will find it much easier to bust through that plateau. However, do note that since you haven’t worked that muscle in some time, it is important to not just blast it in the very first workout, work your way up and ensure proper warm up to avoid injuries.

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