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Friday Fitness: Cross train through plateaus

Q: After leaving H3, I stuck with my training program to get great results.  Recently, however, I feel I haven’t seen as many improvements.  Why?

A: This is not unusual.  This plateau, which in many cases seems like a mountain to conquer, is more often than not due to a relapse to previous negative habits.  However, there are people who stick to their plan religiously and still encounter this effect.  Generally, if you maintain your exercise plan the plateau will eventually end and a healthy rate of weight loss will resume.  However, if you find that the stalemate is continuing, I would then recommend cross training.

Cross training is the technique of varying your fitness routine to keep your muscles constantly guessing.  For example, if you walk the same distance at the same pace every day your body begins to adapt.  By increasing and decreasing your speed, adding elevation/incline, or choosing to ride the route on a bicycle, you’ll begin to notice your body producing greater results.  In fact, studies have consistently shown that by mixing up your routine, you can increase muscle strength and lower body fat at a faster rate than with structured exercise programs without variety.

 

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