Sometimes you just need to shake things up and knock the rust off your routine. Don’t feel bad; it seems to happen to the best of us. Really it doesn’t matter how perfect that routine is. At some point your body will become fairly adapted to it or even worse, you won’t feel challenged by it. That is when it makes sense to shake things up.
Of course for many people, that idea is scary. It fits in their schedule, it is comfortable, they know what they are doing, and it should work because it has worked before; and that is the rub…it doesn’t work now. So instead of complaining about it any long, try one of these great ways to refresh your routine and breathe new life into it so it can work again.
Top 5 Shake Up Tips
- Tempo – How fast do you perform each repetition? If you go fast all the time, then make sure to slow down. On the other hand, if you go slowly then speed up. Or you can mix and match with fast explosive reps on the positive motions and very slow negatives for more tension.
- Volume – How many sets do you do for each muscle? That volume might be too much or too little. Mix it up one day by doing 8 sets of squats if you normally do 4 and then do half of other exercises. Confuse your body by overloading in one area and then doing less in another. Heck you could even pick one compound exercise and do that for 12 sets and skip the other exercises.
- Reps – This is one of the best ways to mix things up. Most people go hard and heavy all the time, which usually is great. But sometimes the body can use a break and high reps are a great answer. Cut back on a few sets per body part and then increase the rep per set to 15 or 20. Feel the burn and work on some muscle endurance.
- Order – Things don’t always have to be the exact same. If you work chest, shoulders, and triceps why not start with shoulders? Or on leg day go calves then hamstring. Even within a body part you can mix it up. For example, start with chest flyes then move to dips. From there go to cable crossovers and finish with flat benches.
- Rest – How long do you rest between sets and exercises? You can easily cut back or increase the time which can affect the entire workout. Longer rest periods often help recover more strength while shorter rest periods keep the blood pumping. Both have unique benefits and should be explored.
The Bottom Line
Don’t be a slave to the process. By tinkering with a few things you can easily unlock more growth and development in your body because you need to stress the muscles for them to grow. So give a few of these tips a try for a few weeks to shake things up. More than likely you will see and feel the difference rather quickly. You could even try a new tip every two weeks. That keeps things fresh and new to keep your mind and body engaged over the next few months.