Tate Wheeler, health enhancement director at The New Richmond Area Centre, offers this advice for people looking to improve their activity and health:
“Cross training and muscle confusion is key to breaking through plateaus and having long term success.
“How many of you have got into a workout routine and saw good results the first 3-6 weeks and then everything stalled or went backwards from there? This happens all the time. You hit a plateau. Why did this happen? It occurred because our bodies are smart and they adapt to a routine if you do it over and over again. The best way to bust through those plateaus is to switch it up! Two terms are commonly used when you switch up your routine and they are Cross Training and/or Muscle Confusion. Simply put, it means to include several types of exercises.
“Some of the benefits of cross training and muscle confusion include: Improved overall shape; Reduce the chance of overuse injuries; Muscles are forced to work harder which equals better results; Keeps your routine fresh and exciting; Breaking through plateaus.
“So whether you are just starting a routine or you’re a regular exerciser make sure you include cross training and muscle confusion. If you always workout on the treadmill, cross train by adding in the elliptical, bike or pool workout. If you are always doing the same chest press machine and lat pulldown machine add in push-ups, dumbbell incline press, one arm rows, inverted rows or others. If you always do squats mix it up with lunges and step ups. Adding variety is going to give you better results. If you are investing the time into working out, don’t you want to get results? If so, then cross training and muscle confusion is the way to go!”