Why You’ve Plateaued (And What You Can Do About It)

Have you found your results have plateaued, even though you’re working out consistently?

Wondering how you can jumpstart your progress and get back on track to hitting your

Let’s take a closer look at the dreaded workout plateau and what you can do to fix it.

Why we plateau when exercising

When we first start working out, results come quickly. You get stronger, faster and fitter
over the period of just a couple of weeks. This keeps you feeling motivated and you’ll keep
working out in the hopes of seeing more of those returns.
Unfortunately, over time your body does adapt to exercise. In one way, this is a good thing –
your brain has caught up and wired itself to move your body in a new way. But it also means
that your progress can slow and eventually stall.
I often see this with women who come to me for help. They might have seen some results
when they first started out by walking or jogging on the treadmill 3 times a week. But after
about 8-12 weeks, they get bored and stop seeing progress.
How can you bust through a fitness rut? Put simply – you need to change up your exercise
routine. By introducing something that your body isn’t adapted to, you’ll start to see
improvements that keep you motivated.

How often is just right?

Just because you’ve plateaued doesn’t mean you need to do something different every
single time you work out. To see consistent results, you do want to stick to a routine for a
period of time before shaking it up.
I recommend sticking to an exercise regime for 4-8 weeks at a time, then swap it for
something else. This allows your body to get used to the routine and benefit from that type
of exercise, and then you switch it up to avoid a plateau.

Ways to shake up your exercise routine

The good news is that you don’t have to completely overhaul your workout or quit your
favourite form of exercise to change up your routine. There are several different ways to
shake up your exercise routine.

Target different muscle groups
One simple way to change up your exercises is to switch to similar exercises that target
different muscle groups. For example, you could switch your plank for side planks instead.
This is a great idea if you want to boost your overall strength and keep your muscles in
Increase your weights
Another easy way to mix up a routine is by increasing the weight. This could be in terms of
upping the weight for your free-weight or machine-based exercises. Or it could be adding
weight to bodyweight movements such as squats.
Make sure that you progress slowly when it comes to increasing weight. Don’t jump from
2.5kg weights to 10kg overnight! Otherwise, you risk injuring yourself.
Increase your intensity
Another simple way to mix up your workouts is to increase the intensity of your session.
Increasing intensity can be a great bang for your buck time-wise, as you can reap similar
benefits in a shorter period of time.
Going for a leisurely walk might lead into a jog. If you’re comfortable jogging, you might add
in some sprint intervals. Or you could reduce your breaks between exercises to increase the
overall intensity.
Remember that increasing intensity is supposed to be one step at a time. If you’re currently
walking for 30 minutes at a time, you don’t want to jump into running a marathon!
Try a more advanced version of an exercise
Most forms of exercise have advanced versions to try out. If you’ve mastered one exercise,
look at a more challenging version. For example, if you’ve got half burpees down pat,
progress to a full burpee.
When you’re trying more advanced movements, focus on getting your form right before
worrying about how quickly you can complete them or how many you can do. You’ll see
more results from an exercise done correctly.

Change your form of movement completely!

It’s absolutely fine to change how you move your body from time to time – especially if
you’re new to exercising regularly.
You might also want to do this if you’ve been under a lot of stress or need to give your body
some downtime. For example, you might benefit from taking a week off from Crossfit and
doing some yoga and Pilates instead.

Do you need help busting out of your fitness plateau? I’m here to help. I train clients both online and face to face. Send me a message and let’s chat!

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