Progressive Overload.

Progressive overload.

What is it?

The principal of progressive overload involves continuously increasing the demands upon the musculoskeletal system (your muscles) to make gains in muscle size, strength, and endurance.

How do you do this?

A program that focuses on progressive overload is one that increases resistance, reps, and sets. The progressions work upon the strength you already have and help you to make gains slowly but safely.

This type of programming can be done in a gym, of course, but it can also be done at home.

Someone looking to incorporate the progressive overload principal into their at home training schedule should have at least a few sets of weights at home.

Here are some tips for incorporating progressive overload into in home training.

-Remember you will not start with the same size weights for all exercises. Most people can use heavier weights for leg exercises like squats and deadlifts where as exercises like tricep extensions and shoulder raises will probably utilize much lighter weights.

-You will progress at different rates for different exercises and this will be different for different people. Some people might be able to increase resistance quicker in squats or lunges while others might want to take more time at a certain resistance and rep range for their curls/rows/chest flys etc.

-And that leads me to this: become aware of how your body feels in each movement. If you increase your reps/sets/resistance and it doesn’t feel good, don’t feel the need to stay there just for the sake of progressing. Go back, work on movement through the exercise, work on good posture, and what could have been the trigger to the what caused you to not feel good.

-Lastly, remember to deload or rest. This will look different for different people. You might do three workouts progressing upward and then a deload workout where you dip back down to a lower resistance/rep range/or amount of sets. You might work 6 weeks towards a goal and then take another week to rest. Again, listen to your body, what feels good, what doesn’t.

And another thing, these rests and deloads really only make sense if you are remaining consistent with your programming. If you are constantly skipping workouts, an extra week of rest or a deloaded workout is not going to do your body good.

If you have questions about programming or at home workouts, I am here to answer them.

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