Progressive Overload : Is It Sustainable?

Updated: Aug 21, 2021

A common method that people use in training is to stress the body is progressive overload. Although that is a great place to start, it also has its drawbacks.

Our bodies don’t have the capacity to handle progressive overload indefinitely. Eventually, the load will exceed our limits and we will hit a plateau. Once this happens, we will either need to rest or use a slightly different stimulus so that it can continue to adapt.

An easy thing to remember is, when you hit a plateau, bring the weight down to something slightly heavier than what you started with. That way, you lighten the stress in the body and then build it back up to a new max.⁣⁣⁣⁣ ⁣⁣⁣⁣ So what other ways can we stimulate the body besides progressive overload so that we can see progress over the long term?⁣⁣⁣⁣ ⁣⁣⁣⁣ • Fixed weight but adds rep each week ⁣⁣⁣⁣ • Fixed weight, fixed reps, but add a set each week ⁣⁣⁣⁣ • Volume ⁣⁣⁣⁣ • Change the loading position. Example: Goblet squat: goblet hold, bucket hold, double front rack, single arm, overhead, etc. ⁣⁣⁣⁣ • Time⁣⁣⁣⁣ • Body orientation relative to the load ⁣⁣⁣⁣ There are many other ways to stimulate the body in new ways to prevent hitting a wall with your progress. Feel free to message me if you have any questions!⁣⁣⁣⁣

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