Monday, April 18, 2011

Stuck? Get on Your Period!

by Kris Pitcher

Doing the same thing all the time can lead to a serious plateau. Coupled with the boredom that comes along with that, and you're on your way to quit-city. When you feel stuck in a rut it's time to try something new. Let's look at periodization! That's right, we're going to get you on your period!

Truly what's happened is adaptation. Your body has gotten used to the amount of work you've been doing, and you need to change it up. In order to make gains, you've got to make changes. "Periodizing" your training means changing it at regular intervals or "periods". This goes for your cardio, and your strength.

When you're considering your strength training you have a number of variables you can change. The number of repetitions per set, or the number of sets you do. You have the amount of weight, or resistance you use. There's the time you rest between sets. Also the amount of rest between workouts. You can change the order of exercises, and of course there are infinite (almost) variations on the exercises themselves.

All of these things can be changed based on what your goals are. You would only change certain things, not all of those variables. Complicated? Yes and no. Working with a professional is a good idea. They can help you work toward the next level by periodizing your program for you based on your goals and progress.

You can also periodize your cardio workouts in much the same way. Walking, running, swimming, and cycling specifically are highly periodized sports. But changing the intensity, duration, and type of cardiovascular exercise you are doing is important to making continued progress toward your goals as well.

Change is a good thing when it comes to exercise. Our bodies quickly adapt to what we're asking them to do. Keep your brain engaged and your body guessing by incorporating periodization!

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