Have you been working out for a long time and not seeing results? People constantly ask me why they have hit a plateau even though they are still working out on a fairly consistent program.

I always tell my clients how rapidly your body responds to a new exercise program depends on a number of factors. Here I share the top 6 factors that influence your results in the gym.

1. Your goals

While weight loss can occur almost immediately (a simultaneous change in exercise and diet will almost always result in rapid water loss), improving flexibility, increasing cardiovascular endurance and building muscle all take considerably longer. If you are brand new to exercise you’ll most likely notice change a lot faster compared to someone who has been training for some time.

But trust me, slow and steady wins the race!

2. How consistent you are

Obviously, the more consistent we are and the closer you adhere to your nutrition plan, the more rapidly you’ll see results. Even still, women can’t expect to put on more than a pound of muscle each month  (men can add between 1.5 and 2.5 pounds of muscle every month because of their higher testosterone levels but for women this is not the case). It’s not about being perfect but the closer we are to hitting our target calories and macros the faster the results will come.

3. The intensity of the exercise

If you want to see results, you must exercise at a level of intensity that’s higher each week. That’s why it’s important to increase weights week to week.  If you feel stagnant or like your workouts are too easy, you have to let your coach know or you just have to switch up your programming method. Remember, the body adapts quickly and is very good at doing so so programming plays a huge role in beating plateaus!

4. Stress

If you are highly stressed, you may be holding onto water weight and feel more bloated than usual. When we are super stressed our cortisol levels rise (stress hormone) which causes us to bloat and potentially eat more. Mental health is just as important as physical so if you have been highly stressed, it is possible it can be delaying your results.

5. Getting adequate rest

Rest, both between your weekly workouts, as well as your sleep at night, is vital for proper muscular recovery and hormonal balance. Not getting adequate amount of sleep can definitely hinder results. How has your sleep been? You should be aiming for 6 to 8 hours of sleep a night.

6. And last but not least, Genetics! 

If your parents and siblings have bodies that are slow to respond to exercise and healthy eating, chances are yours is too. This is not to say if obesity runs in your family that you can’t beat it. It just may mean results can be a little more delayed compared to people who are a naturally thin with a fast metabolism. Don’t get discouraged! Hard work and consistency always shines through so stay consistent and remain positive. 

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