If you are attached to your current weightlifting routine and don’t want to throw it out just because your gains have started to slow down then this article is for you. We will show you how you can follow the same set of exercises but shock your muscles into growth as if you were following a completely new weightlifting routine.
Why Change is Good for Growth
The problem with sticking to the same weightlifting routine for too long is that what once gave us great gains no longer delivers the goods due to our bodies and muscles getting used to the exercises that make up the routine.
Our muscles know what is coming before we even pick up the weights and find themselves just going through the motions when you are lifting much as our minds do when performing a repetitive exercise such as doing the dishes, starting the car or brushing our teeth.
It doesn’t take long for our muscles to get stuck in a rut almost as if they are bored and when this happens they stop growing. Something new needs to happen to kick start the muscle building process.
Why not Just Start a New Weightlifting Routine?
Many of us have a favourite routine for lifting weights in the gym that we have either followed for months or even years. Even if you do often change your training routine there is probably one that you keep coming back to.
Whether this is because it is the easiest to remember, has your favourite lifts in or was your very first routine and gave you the best gains when you were starting out; we all have a favourite routine that we fall back on when we need something tried and tested.
So if for whatever reason you don’t want to go through the rigmarole of moving to a new routine here is what you need to do to bring some variety back into your workouts.
Rotation is the Key
Now most of us start our workouts with a big compound move that utilises all or most of the muscles we will be working that day. For chest days this is most likely to be the bench press. For legs the squat and back the deadlift.
After that we follow the compound exercise with a series of isolation exercises that work the smaller muscles such as the triceps, biceps and calves for chest, back and leg days respectively. The key here is to change the order we do the isolation exercises in.
An example chest day workout might look like this:
- Barbell bench press
- Incline dumbbell press
- Dumbbell Flyes
This is a tried and tested chest workout but if you follow it for too long you will stop seeing results because each time you perform this gym routine, by the time you reach the dips and dumbbell flyes your body is already fatigued and not functioning at its best.
This means that the muscles worked in those two exercises hardly get a workout as you are already tired and your muscle power is down. To remedy this we recommend that each time you do a chest workout you change the order of the isolation exercises.
Continue to start with a big compound move like the bench press but change the order of the following exercises. This means you will be hitting each one on rotation with a full tank and can give it your all.
The same can be applied to other body part workouts such as back, shoulders and legs. It even works with full body workouts, just change the order you do the exercises in. Rotating in this way should shock your muscles into growing without you having to rip up your old routine.