De-load - officially not a word in any dictionary.
But it means a lot to many a lifter, cross fitter, or athlete. What is it? and why do we need it?
Traditionally, De-load phases in exercise programming, follow a 4-6 week block of intense work and volume. After that work block, you take a period of time (a week in this case) where you continue to stay active and train, but keep volume and intensities at a lower level. This is to help prevent overuse injuries and let the body heal and recover. We never truly realise that week in and week out of training puts a lot of stress on the body and your CNS. This can lead to overtraining, a loss of strength and power and may eventually lead to injury. So we are thinking ahead and planning to train smarter by slotting it into our programming.
So How do I de-load?
There are a number of ways to de-load and the options work differently from person to person. Thankfully though, we've programmed the next week for you as a de-load. You will notice that the routine will change slightly and the workout volume and intensity would be less. We've programmed it in using a number of different options. We do this with the hope of coming back the following week and hit some big numbers and maybe some long awaited PRs. However this may not always work for everyone. Here are some other options for how to de-load when you feel the need to do so.
1.) The most common method of deloading is just to reduce weights. Normally, you would perform your sets at around 40-60% of your 1RM. The loads are light and the reps and sets are low. The idea is to keep active and train but keep it light and easy.
2.) Another option is to keep your weights, but reduce your volume. If we were doing squats at 300 pounds for 5 reps, we would normally try to reload by doing the same weight for a single or double. This gives you the feeling of still lifting heavy without the prolonged stress of completing it for reps. This gives people that feel like their performance suffers if they don't lift heavy week in and week out, a chance to mentally think they stay on track of their weights without the same stress on the body.
3.) Do something else. Yoga, Pilates, Dance... Work your body in a different way and see how it respond to a different stimulus. They say forcing your body and your brain to learn something new helps keep your mind and your body young.
4.) Do nothing. Probably not the best option to choose for people who can't imagine not doing any exercise, but sometimes this can actually be most beneficial.
Now that you know your options, you need to know when. We plan to always work in this cycle of work and de-load with our programming at the box, but just in case you find yourself slow and sluggish, and just don't know why your numbers are stuck. Maybe, your body is telling you to take one unplanned. Here's a quick list of when it would probably be best to take it easy.
1.) You're getting weaker. Slow and sluggish is just the start, but then you can't seem to feel explosive through any of your lifts. Might be time to rework your training with a de-load.
2.) You're sore everywhere. Not just your plain old muscle soreness that you get from getting a good pump from lifting heavy, but the kind that it hurts to even just execute an air squat. Or your hips are on fire from just walking up a hill. Might be time to get a massage and chill for a short while.
3.) Post Open or post competition. The open is probably the most stressful time of the year for most cross fitters. Taking a good couple of weeks of light work and rest is always best immediately after.
So as we've mentioned, next week is already planned as a week to take it fairly easy. Hopefully it will help you find some balance back in your training and bring some big numbers the week after.
1.Personal Goal Orientated
When you first train with a personal trainer, one of the things your trainer will help you with is setting up some goals. Many people start exercising without having a clear direction. This means that not only is there a good chance that you will not be taking the most effective route to your goal, but even worse, the lack of direction might cause you to give up before you get there!
Your trainer will be there to talk to you and help you set up goals that are realistic and achievable in a short-run. Your trainer will also talk to you about other goals that may take a little longer and help you find the best way to get you there.
2. Skill Improvement
Not all of you out there who need personal training are absolute beginners. Even if you are a little more experienced, personal training may be of benefit for you too!
Sometimes having a second pair of eyes is just that much better than looking at yourself in a video or a mirror when it comes to feedback. Personal training is particularly useful when you are trying to improve your form for moves such as snatch or clean and jerks.
On the other hand, if you are a beginner, personal training would help you develop the skills you need to get fit without injuring yourself.
3.Personal attention & encouragement
The most obvious difference you will appreciate with personal training right away is the individual attention you get from your trainer. During your one hour session with your trainer, you are the star of the show and it is all about you. While different methods are effective for different individuals when it comes to motivation for exercise, some people thrive when they are encouraged and supported personally. If you are looking for a way to motivate yourself to show up at the box, personal training might be what you have been looking for.
4.Tailor made program and ongoing progress monitoring
A tailor made Italian suit will always fit better than its counterpart at a department store. Personal trainers design tailor made fitness programs in accordance to your goals and needs; goals being what it is you want and needs being what you might not have realised. For instance, you might want to lose weight and get stronger but in order to move forward your trainer identifies the need for you to get more flexible in order to do movements without hurting yourself.
Moreover, your personal trainer is there to monitor your progress and make necessary adjustments to your program. This will help you stay on track to achieve your goals.
5.We hold you accountable
In my opinion, perseverance is the key to getting in shape. Personal training means there are no excuses and you would be held accountable for turning up to a workout. Your trainer will be there to make sure you come to the box and give it your best. At the end of the day, no fitness programme will do any good if you don't give it your best!
Write something about yourself. No need to be fancy, just an overview.