Change Reaction

It's Monday morning, you wake up, prepare your meals and plan your day. It's the start of your weekly training regimen. Each day you arrive at the gym after work at around 6:10 PM. (The same gym that you have been going to for the past eight years!) You warm up on the bike and then proceed to the incline bench. It's Monday, so its chest day. Tuesday, you will train legs, Wednesday, back. Shoulders and arms on Thursday, and Friday you will rest.

You have been consistent with your meals, training, and cardio for eight full weeks, but you just aren't getting the same impressive results you saw after the first 5 weeks. Why? Either you are overtraining(1) and need rest, or it's the time for a CHANGE in your workout regimen.

Assuming you do not possess symptoms of overtraining(1), kick your body back into gear by implementing change. There are four basic areas you need to evaluate for change.

1.) Diet:
Modify your diet to shock your body. Have you been restricting carbs for too long? Throw in a high carb day. Are you eating only brown rice as your carb source? Try substituting with sweet potatoes.

2.) Training schedule
How long have you been training your body parts in the same order, performing the same exercise on the same machines? Change the days, change the exercises and change the order. For example instead of back and biceps or chest and triceps, train biceps and triceps with shoulders. Are you on a 4 on and 1 off schedule? Try changing the train/rest day schedule.

3.) Cardio
Is your form of cardio exercise the same, day in and day out? Switch it up. Jump on the stair master or run sprints outside.

4.) Gym
One last area that may not be as simple to change is your gym. Training at a different gym, will give you that kick start your body needs to REACT. The same machine in a different gym will have different torque, tension, angle, etc. That's why when you train on the same type of machine at a different gym you experience a better pump or unexpected soreness. There is also the mental pump you get just from a change in atmosphere.

Keep in mind, the human body is a highly effective "time keeper" that has the incredible ability to adapt to its surrounding environment. This is vital for survival, but can impede gains and minimize fat loss.

When this happens, the only solution is to CHANGE. Change the way you train and eat! Modify your food choices. Try to perform different exercises for the same body part. Change your workout schedule every 4 weeks. Include a variety of cardio exercises, and if possible, treat yourself to a day in another gym!

Don't let the "time keeper" know what's coming. SHOCKING your body will result in a "CHANGE" REACTION!

Cindy Martinez
NPC Figure Competitor
ON Reps and Sets Athlete

(1) Overtraining: Signs include fatigue, muscle and joint pain. Sudden decrease in exercise performance (cardiovascular, strength, etc), headache, insomnia, depression.

The author is a compensated ON Reps and Sets Athlete, however, the views, opinions, and comments expressed here are those exclusively of the author and do not necessarily represent those of Optimum Nutrition.
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