Mornin’ friends! How is your day going so far? It is past hump day, so you’re almost there if you’re counting down until the weekend!

Overload principle– ever heard of it?


A professor from my college loves this principle and ingrained it into anyone’s head who was listening. This dude knows his stuff. He has been published in every world renown medical journal in print. Plus, he is a firm believer in the post-recovery drink called “chocolate milk.” The carbs and protein in the drink are the perfect combination to refuel your body after a workout. Lovely news? I thought so :) How could you not listen to the man??

Overload Principle:  the requirements necessary to bring about improvement in the various systems of the body.  As the body is subject to loads greater than they are accustomed to, the systems adjust and increase their capacity to perform physical work.
Defin tion from Strength Training 4th ed. by Philip Allsen

What does that mean for me and for you? Just this. If you WANT to improve an area of your body, or general fitness level, or change something, you MUST overload that area.

If you cycle along on an elliptical 5 days/week 50 min/day every day, you are NOT going to see changes in your body. Sure, at the beginning you will, but that is because you overloaded your body when you began. Now that the body is used to the previous overload, to see changes, you MUST change, mix up, or try something new.


Ideas, much?

1. add more resistance to your strength training. i.e. increase number of reps OR sets OR weight

2. Add intervals into your normal steady state cardio plan (be wary of injury and only do this if you’re not a beginner exerciser)

3. increase workout frequency (i.e go from 2 days/week to 3 days/week)

4. increase mileage or time when doing running, cycling, or swimming workouts

5. try a NEW mode of exercise

6. try circuit training, boot camp style classes, or adding hills to a run/bike

And, always remember to ENJOY the mode of exercise you choose, to practice safe techniques, and to get OUT of that workout rut and overload your muscles!!

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  1. […] hard. But I guess I like me a challenge I did stairs, on the stairmill, for 50 minutes without leaning my entire body on the railing (changing it up–killer.) So dang hard. But a really good glutes, hamstring, […]

  2. […] or adding in more interval work. Research shows that fitness improvements are made when the body is challenged (read: not in a rut). Try total body workouts, circuit training, a different weight training plan, […]

  3. […] good when they’ve been worked! Usually shoulder muscles tend to *show* up quite quickly when loaded. This means that we’ll all look eeeevvveeen sexier than we already do if we add a few more […]

  4. […] body has been loaded (or a specific area or muscle group has had a load placed upon it that was) greater than what it was used to. Soreness is usually a good sign that you trained an area that hadn’t been trained (or at […]

  5. […] Thus certain DOMS experiences can be dangerous and debilitating if the workout was too much of an overload to the body, or the exercise was done too fast after an injury or rest period. ouch […]



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