Monday, January 14, 2013

Progressive Overload = Growth

Progressive Overload  = Growth

Clients ask me often in the gym ,"How do I TONE, how do I get arms that have shape or curves?" My answer is to lift. Heavy, different than you have been. Granted, there are all kinds of factors that add up to the "arms" people are aiming for: Genetics, diet, training program, effort. YES, effort. 

Diamonds form under pressure
water can carve through rock with time
Gold is made pure through intense heat
WE become stronger through trials, through testing, through OVERLOAD.  

At the gym, do you come in and lift the same amount of weight each day? Do you always do the same exercises for the same amount of time? If so, chances are you are not seeing many results. When you change what you are doing, when you CHALLENGE your muscles and your body you will see change. 

Progressive overload forces the body to do more than it's accustomed to and just like that diamond that overload process is where change happens. When we put pressure on our musculoskeletal system (muscles, bones, connective tissue etc) and strengthens ALL of those! Eventually our body adapts to what we are doing, how much weight we are lifting and we simply maintain the weight, physique etc we are at. 

Overloading Chest and Triceps today. 

A few ways to implement progressive overload is increase resistance or weight used. When 10 reps at 12 pounds becomes easy, up your weight and still aim for your 10 reps. 

Increase time: Do more sets of the same exercises, spend more time and keep that muscle under more tension in turn and you will see growth. 

Increase intensity: take fewer rests, do crunches in between or change the speed (lift a little slower and create more intense reps.)

Make one change and stick with that for three to four weeks, then make another change for three to four weeks. Progressive Overload is a concept within a periodization program, a way of moving through stages of training for growth and injury prevention. Increasing sets and reps for a month and then moving on to heavier weights and fewer reps is a simple example. 

Through the waters
Isaiah 43: 

Fear not: for I have redeemed thee, I have called thee by thy name; thou art mine.
When thou passest through the waters, I will be with thee; and through the rivers, they shall not overflow thee: 
when thou walkest through the fire, thou shalt not be burned; neither shall the flame kindle upon thee.

The same progressive overload process applies with our faith. When we face things that are too much for us, when we are forced into a situation we are not accustomed to, we will GROW. Each one is our choice. Will we pick up that extra weight in the gym? Will we allow our selves to be changed, shaped, refined and formed like a diamond into what God is calling us to?

 We may not know the shape of it yet, but we know that through God the outcome will shine, be brilliant and will cause us to GROW, be strengthened and progress! IF we allow him, will we? 

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