Progressive Overload – Lifting My Spirits


If you wish to develop into stronger or to develop lean muscle, your program should purposefully and regularly improve the work carried out throughout lifting over time.

That’s referred to as progressive overload.

Lifting a little bit heavier or lifting the identical weight extra occasions creates rigidity on the muscle that pushes it previous what it has carried out earlier than.

That is how we trigger the difference of muscle development and with it, energy.

This may be carried out with growing the load, which is predicted to occur as we prepare.  We develop into stronger, so we’ll use heavier weight.

However we are able to’t try this indefinitely.  Irrespective of how lengthy you prepare, or how efficient your coaching protocol is, there’s a genetic restrict to how a lot weight you’ll have the ability to choose up.

So to maintain progressing, we should use different variables to build up that overloading on the muscle.

Two main variables used to create progressive overload with the identical load are the variety of repetitions carried out for every set, the variety of units carried out per session, and coaching frequency.

What follows will not be precise coaching protocols, however examples to point out how manipulating a single variable (reps, units, coaching frequency) will change the overall quantity of labor carried out with a specific physique half.

Reps and Quantity

When you don’t raise heavier, or improve units, however simply improve your repititions, you improve complete work carried out by that muscle group over a brief period of time.

Units and Quantity

Retaining the load and reps fixed, however growing the variety of units carried out over time will increase the work carried out by fairly a bit.

Coaching Frequency and Quantity

This one may shock these lifters who’re following an “old style” 5-day cut up (ie chest on Mondays, again on Tuesdays, and so forth.)  Granted, compound actions like squats work a couple of bodypart, but when your progress is stalled on a body-part cut up, it’s essential to do extra quantity.  Switching to an higher/decrease, push/pull, or comparable cut up will improve your quantity over the week.

These examples are simplistic on goal – I needed to point out how the the overall work carried out could be elevated by altering one variable.

Over time, growing the work carried out creates the progressive overload wanted to trigger physique to adapt to that elevated demand.  That’s how we get stronger.  And if we’re stronger, we grew muscle.

There are different variables that may trigger progressive overload, however they’re more durable to point out in a chart.


If somebody is in a fat-loss part, they’ve fewer caloires out there for vitality.  With out altering something in regards to the lifting protrocol, the physique has a more durable time to finish the raise with much less vitality.

A lifter can preserve all the things the identical, however use gradual reps, or paused reps.  That “time underneath rigidity” will make the identical variety of reps and units with that load quite a bit more durable.

Shortening the remainder time between units, beginning the subsequent set earlier than absolutely recovered, will make the work a little bit more durable, too.

Coaching Age and Progressive Overload

Coaching age makes an enormous distinction when contemplating tips on how to manipulate these variables to progress.

Every little thing works for novices.  The primary three months of coaching could be misleading.  It gained’t all the time be that magical.

Intermediate and superior lifters want extra intentionally deliberate protocols to trigger progressive overload to proceed to progress.  Particularly if they’re in a lower.  

Somebody may be pondering that they don’t have to know the way all these variables work to make progress.  Nicely, that’s true up to some extent.  You probably have been lifting for a number of years, it’s doable that you simply’re not in a position to progress due to your programming.

It’s additionally true which you can stroll throughout the nation, however flying could be a better option, proper?  You are able to do a factor, or you are able to do it optimally.


Come hang around with us in a single (or each) of our Fb communities to get impressed, be taught, and be supported by like-minded busy adults!

Coach Tammy grew to become an athlete in her 50’s and is keen about serving to different busy adults remodel their well being.  Every particular person has a novel mixture of strengths and challenges which have for use to form a program that can work.   Science-based rules, flexibility, accountability, and help make all of the distinction.  If you wish to be taught extra about her on-line teaching applications, click here.

Let’s join! Observe me on social media:

Source link