T Nation



Why and how do you plateau if your not overtraining?


You may reach a plateau if you don't change your training style frequently. Variety is important!


It's called neural conditioning. If you don't change your routine, you're neurons reach a higher threshold at which they need to be stimulated before firing. Furthermore, fewer neurons will be recruited (ie. fewer muscles) in order to do lift the same load.


When you say change your routine are you talking about the amount of sets/reps for that exercise or actually changing the whole exercise? I'm about 100% sure you can do either or, but can I stick with one exersice and just change my rep or set scheme and get the same results as if I was to change the exercise and if not, why? I appreciate all of your help.


I'll just bump it once just to try to get one more thought.


change the whole thing get a different exercise to target the muscle from a different stress point change the intensity and volume of your routine. Rep count.


oh yeah as far as the exercise any exp. if you do Bicep curls all the time try a different type of curl like preacher, Zottman, incline, standing, sitting cable, you name it they all target the muscle in a different way so why stick with the same movement all the time?


Cycling the load over a period of time does much the same thing as "Just mix everything up" Look at power and oly lifters--they concentrate on 2-3 lifts and perform (and gain) on them year-round. The secret? Cycling.

Now, this isn't to say that they don't hit Plateaus as well, but I think cycling/periodizing training goes a long way towards eliminating stagnation.