Key Steps to Increase Muscle Growth and Decrease Fat
Are the many hours of devoted workout sessions without the results starting to frustrate you? Well, there are many factors that can cause this, but the two main reasons this can happen that most trainers and instructors will not talk about are:
1) Changing your routine
2) Proper rest.
1) Changing your workout routine every 3-4 weeks is very important in order to keep the nervous system sharp and make the body learn to respond to new and different movements. If you do not change your routine, you are simply allowing your body to be complacent in a way that doesn’t continue progress. The changes do not need to be drastic, but make sure you are not doing the same movements for months on end without any changes.
2) If the body is not fully recovered from its previous workouts and the training continues, the tissue break down will continue to a level where the muscle can sprain or strain. Not paying attention to these signs can lead to serious long term injury that could keep you from getting any kind of workout in at all. So how do you know if you are overtraining and how do you prevent it?
Signs of Over Training:
- Constant muscle soreness
- Mood swings
- Injuries that won’t heal
How To Prevent Overtraining:
We strongly suggest to vary your exercise sessions with the three planes of motion (below). This is an effective way to prevent overtraining in specific muscle groups.
- Sagittal Plane: Front-Back
- Frontal Plane: Side to Side
- Transversal Plane: Rotation-Twist.
Resting Heart Rate:
Checking your resting heart rate can give you an indication of where your fitness level is at and also whether your body is stressed, fatigued, or fighting an illness.
I’d suggest the Delta Heart Rate Method:
- In order to take your heart rate (if you have a monitor) take it for two minutes lying down for your resting heart rate and keep the lowest number. If you do not have a monitor, count your pulse for 30 seconds then double it.
- Take your heart rate every morning for several days (before you get out of bed) to get an average base line of your normal resting heart rate (usually between 60-90 bpm)
- Start to take your Delta Heart Rate, which is the change in BPM from resting to standing. So after you take your resting heart rate, stand up, wait a few seconds, take your standing heart rate. Then, subtract the difference between your standing and resting and that is your Delta Heart Rate.
- Start to monitor your heart rate daily to see how your body is doing that day. You’ll notice as you become more fit, your resting heart rate will decrease. However, if you notice a spike in your Delta heart rate one morning (difference of 0-10 bpm is excellent, 10-20 bp is normal, 20-30+ bpm is cautionary). That is usually a sign your body is fatigued, stressed, fighting illness etc. This means you should REST that day and not exercise. If you are in the 0-10 range, that would be a good day to exercise and possibly try some new movements.
Using these techniques can help you be more aware of what your body can handle and where you are at in your fitness level.
“Keep On Moving!”
Luis Ponce Sr.
( 408) 778-5577