25 April 2014

Variety is Essential

Doing the same exercises day in and day out can cause the muscles to 'get used to the tasks' and they are no longer 'challenged' by the workout. Hence we reach the so-called Exercise Plateau. Further just because we work out daily it doesn't mean we will be able to do any type of exercise easily. Example: I used to walk about 5kms daily yet when I started cycling I found I was unable to do more than 10 kms without getting tired and that too on a flat road.

Thus its important to add different types of workouts so our muscles are used to working differently and working with different muscles groups. These varying workouts can be spread over the period of a month. Practical examples: Walk backwards for a part of your route, jog sideways, cycle on a slope instead of the usual cycle track.

Here is an extract of a my Healthnotes column first published in the July 2009 issue of Windows & Aisles, the in flight magazine of Paramount Airways.

Exercise plateau:

An ‘exercise plateau’ may occur after a period of exercising and manifests as a roadblock in fitness or weight loss goals. The best way to overcome this is to take a rain check of the exercise program and diet. Vary your workout every six to eight weeks. Change is vital to maintain the ‘surprise’ element for muscles and to continue challenging them. On a daily basis add variety by changing repetitions or weights during resistance training. Change from machine-led to free weights training or visa-versa. For cardio workouts, change the type/ duration and intensity of exercise. Adding interval training can further spice up your session. Sign up for Power Yoga or Tai Chi for a mind-body experience.

Inspired? Go on try it out!

Disclaimer: All suggestions are general in nature. Readers are advised to exercise caution before implementing them and seek expert advise about what is suitable for their specific needs. 


Unknown said...

Makes lots of sense to do a variety of exercise to work a variety of muscles. ♥

Archana said...

Thank You Kathy!

Debbie D. said...

That sounds like very good advice. Now, if I could just get in the routine of daily workouts!

Rajlakshmi said...

I agree, same excercise makes it boring :)

Archana said...

THanks Rajlakshmi! :)