Fairly often I have people that hear about the success of my client(s) and then asks me for a set workout that they can do, or to make a few changes to ‘mix-it-up’ for the program they have been doing……
I can do that, but I can not keep this workout from creating a plateau for you. No one can. In fact the definition of Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results. A ‘set’ workout plan is not much different. If you go to the gym & do the same machines with the pin pushed into the same number each time you are there, then you can expect the same as last time. The fact is that although you may be stronger than not doing anything, but you also are not using your gym time to it’s fullest potential.
You have to keep mixing things up and keep the body guessing. If you do the same things repeatedly then the body adapts and continually attempts to do the same amount of work while recruiting less muscle fibers. This is actually the reverse effect that people are looking for as I wrote about in Cycling Strength.
If you are finding that you are in a Strength Plateau, then you should consider if you are over-training, or getting in-sufficient recovery. Are you going to hard or riding too hilly a course on your easy days? How is the hydration? the nutrition? too much volumn? too much intensity?
A workout program must have a progression of challenging exercises to get the desired results on the bike. If I got someone to do the hardest workout the first time they came into the studio, they may not be able to walk back in 2 days later. Thus, in order to get different results, your workouts have to change and continually challenge your body. Only through challenging your body and recovery do you get strength gains.
So, we start with the basic exercises, and see how the body responds and adjust accordingly.
Next we make sure that both legs are putting out an equivalent amount of energy into the pedals.Then we go for dramatic strength increases, so that we can do plyometrics which will add the explosive power to this increased strength.
Going through this phase of exercises takes several months. Only through proper challenges and recovery do you get optimal strength gains that allow you to break through strength plateaus!