How To Combat A Training Plateau

By Ffion Mcgowan – Snap Fitness

Have you ever got to that point in your training where it seems that nothing is working? You’re not progressing with your lifts or perhaps the diet and training plan you have been following just isn’t delivering results anymore?

We have all pretty much been there (trainers included!) where we feel like throwing in the towel and calling it a day. So how do you get over it?

First of all, how do you get to a plateau to start with? There are many reasons as to why this may be, from over-training to under-eating, not getting enough rest in or not sticking to a plan for long enough. Here are some of the main reasons that may indicate you have hit a plateau:

Loss of strength

This is a common sign that you might in fact be overtraining! A loss of strength is seen when week in, week out, you simply cannot hit the weights you had previously, which may indicate that your body is unable to recover sufficiently.


Lack of Motivation

Have you ever dreaded your gym sessions that you once used to enjoy? This is a clear indicator that you’ve hit that dreaded plateau. It may be time to step away for a while to refresh or mix it up and try something new. Sometimes we just don’t want to train, and everyone has off days (trainers too again! We are human too!) but if week in, week out you are dreading those sessions, it’s time to rethink or refresh.


Not making progress

Aside from strength, are you seeing you’re not making progress towards your goals? Be it muscle gain or weight loss, are you stuck in a rut running on a treadmill that’s not working? Perhaps you’re trying to cut that 5k run time down, but nothing is working. Once again, you may well be stuck in a plateau.


Appetite changes

It may be that you feel like you could eat the whole kitchen! Or perhaps you are skipping meals and not feeling any hunger whatsoever. When we hit a plateau, our hunger can often be affected and it’s time to rethink to get our appetite back on track.

Now you’ve figured out that you’ve hit a plateau, how do you get out of it? Sometimes it might not be as simple as a good night’s sleep and a fresh start, so here is how we can get out of that slump!


Take a week off

A week out of the gym will not cause you to lose your progress. Sometimes we need to step back and take time away to come back refreshed and ready to make progress again. Recovery is just as important psychologically and physiologically in order for you to keep achieving your goals within the gym.


Mix up your training

Dreading those sessions? Not finding that push, pull, legs split enjoyable anymore or perhaps you’re fed up with the same spin class that you’ve been going to for months. Maybe it’s time to try something new. Gym classes can be a great way to add variation into your training, check out your gym’s timetable to see what is on offer, or perhaps head over to an app to see what virtual classes you can get your hands on.


Speak to a Personal Trainer

You might well have been doing the same gym plan for years and years and now it just doesn’t seem to be working, or that motivation has dipped. A personal trainer can be a great option to provide you with a new fresh outlook on training, with new ideas and a new push in motivation. Do your research into what you’re looking for and what the personal trainers offer in your gym and get in contact. Many gyms may offer a complimentary induction that you can claim at any point, so speak to your gym team for more information – they’re here to help and I promise we are human too!

Hopefully by now you have all the tools to figure out if you’re in a plateau and what you can do about it to get back into a routine of enjoying your workouts and making progress.