I was checking my email a min. ago and got my JumpUSA newsletter that has tips, (I bought the strength shoes a long time ago)and it was from our very own Chad Waterbury. Here’s the newsletter, enjoy…
Reach the Next Level: 3 Ways to Get Past a Training Plateau
I was stuck. Thousands of biceps curls for months on end, and nothing. Not even half an inch. My arms had simply stopped growing.
I took the Taoist approach: I quit trying. Instead of doing direct arm work, like curls, I concentrated on my chest, shoulders, and back, hitting them with heavy-lifting sets of chinups, rows, presses, and dips.
That’s when it happened. My arms inflated.
Truth is, I hadn’t really stopped working my arms. I was working them harder than ever – by association. The exercises I was using for my chest and back were also enlisting my biceps and triceps, stimulating more muscle fibers in different ways than with the arm isolation exercises.
My realization: Changing the training approach is the trigger for blasting through a frustrating plateau, in either muscle or strength.
Since then, I’ve experimented with dozens of rut-busting methods. Here I list three of the best. For maximum benefit, use only one technique at a time, for one exercise at a time, every 4 weeks. If you’ve been lifting consistently for a year or more, you’ll change the look of your workout – and your muscles.
- Lift Light
Small blood vessels called capillaries deliver oxygen, amino acids, and hormones to your muscles, helping them recover–and grow–faster. Research has shown that heavy weight training decreases capillary density.
The fix: Do high-repetition sets with light weights (25 percent of the amount you can lift once) on your days off, targeting whatever muscle group is lagging. “It’ll increase the number of capillaries in your working muscles, allowing better nutrient transfer,” says Chad Waterbury, a strength coach in Arizona.
Examples: Perform a total of 100 repetitions with the light weight. So if your triceps are lacking, continue to do your normal workout 1 or 2 days a week. But you’ll also do 100 repetitions of a triceps exercise on the other 5 days. Use a weight that’s about 25 percent of the heaviest amount you can lift one time. Do four sets of 25 repetitions, or two sets of 50 repetitions, spaced throughout the day.