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There Are No Excuses for Exercise Plateaus

Your plateaus are as limiting as clouds to a rocket launching into space

There is absolutely no excuse for ever hitting a complete plateau when it comes to exercise.

Sure, you may not be able to lift more weight, or get one more rep for a while, but progression happens far beyond the scope of numbers on a spread sheet.

This is why I created the Scoreboard. It’s not just a log, it’s a tool to ensure you progress with each and every single workout for the rest of your life.

That being said, sometimes you may feel stuck with it.

If that should happen here are some foolproof ways to keep moving forwards with the Scoreboard progression log.

- Give yourself more options.

Do you only track how many push ups you can do in 3 minutes? Are there only 2 different squats you practice?

The Scoreboard gives you the ability to track and progress in an almost unlimited number of exercise and workout variations.

While you don’t want to just keep adding variations, the more variations you have the more chances you have to progress. Maybe you can’t break a record of how many pull ups you can do at once, but you might be able to do more in 3 minutes, 4 minutes, or add a round to the death workouts.

- Look into technical considerations.

It’s so easy to get stuck with 2 dimensional progression where you just add volume or intensity. Keep in mind that technical progression is infinite. We can always improve our technique in some way.

Check out a later post for more on this subject. For right now though simply asking yourself to perform the exercise to a higher level can bring your technique up to a whole new level.

- Get an injury screen from a therapist or athletic trainer.

We all have something out of kilter in our body. We are too tight here, or too weak there.

Getting a simple screen from someone trained to spot these physical hic-ups can be a massive short cut to fast improvements you never knew were possible. Just ask around some of the local PT clinics for a appointment. Many times they are free of charge.

- Use old exercises with new toys.

If you’ve been doing pull ups on the same pull up bar try using a towel, rings or grip grenades. 

That’s one of the unique advantages of Kaisthenics. There are so many toys we can play with you always have new options and opportunity to progress.

- Change up your weekly routine.

It’s always good to bust out of your normal routine. Recently I went from working out every day to working out 2 days and then taking a day off.

Switching up your workout days and rest days, by adding or subtracting either one, is sure to make your body and mind wake up to new progressions.

Once again, there are so many opportunities to progress. There is absolutely no excuses to taking a step forwards every day even if it’s small.

 

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Comments

  1. Laurie Mackeson

    Hey Matt. Some very enjoyable reading on the site at the moment. Just got back from QLD (the state to our north) weekend trip – 1000km by plane and 2000km in a car over 4 days.

    I read this blog a few weeks ago and the 4-day weekend away gave me an opportunity to reflect on the concept on a plateau in a different, and much more productive/empowering way than I used to.

    I (sometimes) think of a plateau as a ‘resting place’ between periods of enjoyable work – especially when you are tired/fatigued. Other times I think of a plateau as a place where you can take the time to feel good about where you have come from. Plateaus are also about taking a moment to consider how I can make the upcoming journey (climb/rise) as enjoyable as possible. Either way, I say, (to some degree) “Bring on my next plateau”.

    Got any holidays/trips of your own planned that you can share? Laurie

    1. Author
      admin

      Those are some really great ways of looking at a plateau there Laurie. Thanks for sharing your insights, it has really given my mind some things to chew on for a while.

      1. Laurie Mackeson

        Matt – I am glad I was able to provide you with something good to think about. I sometimes wonder how much sense I make. LOL

        “Physical” Plateaus are obvious because ones ability to perform a task (athletic) or change their body (body building) is (in a simple way of thinking) a matter of measuring something. Let me throw an additional kind of plateau which I know has occured and (prior to my Fit Rebel days) resulted in me ceasing my Caloric IN/OUT choices.

        I call it a ‘Mental Plateau’. Typical symptoms are being ‘tired/stressed’ unable to continue doing the things you have previously been doing. This kind of plateau typically occurs when (a) something in your life changes and/or the things you were doing have caused negative consequences that have built up to a level where you are feeling stress to keep them up in order to produce the results you have/want.

        As you have said, and I have learned to apply, there is an limited amount of stress we can put ourselves under before we crack. We all need to find a ‘fluid balance’ (a balance that moves from time to time) between what we HAVE and the extra things we WANT.

        Fingers crossed I have made sense twice in a row….Laurie

  2. Nanarc

    I think dealing with plateaus is different for everyone. When I reach a plateau, I just simply rest for 5 – 7 days and go back to my workout routine. I do experience some decrease in strength, stamina, and agility for 4-5 days, but after that I come back stronger than before. However, it could also be a sign that I’ve been over training myself though. Or it could also mean since I’ve experienced some decrease in workout quality after a long rest, I start to push the envelope to close the gap. What’s your opinion on that?

    1. Author
      admin

      For sure, you’re on the right track. Taking a short break is one of the best ways to come back strong and make some new gains.

      I don’t think I was all too clear with this post though. I was trying to say that we can always make progress even if it’s in the smallest of increments. As we become more advanced and conditioned the steps forward may be almost minuscule, but they will still take us forward.

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