5 Signs It's Time To Switch Up Your Workout

06/10/2015 10:16 am ET | Updated Jun 10, 2016
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Could changing it up be what you need to get stronger, fitter, faster? Take the test now.
By Amy Schlinger, SELF

A regular workout routine is important for your body--but not if it's keeping you from seeing results. "Your body eventually adapts to the training requirements and demands placed on it," says Faheem Mujahid, owner of Influence Atelier training facility in Miami, FL. Wondering if you're suffering from workout fatigue? Mujahid shares some signs that it's time to start mixing things up--starting right now.

1. You're breezing through reps without putting in much effort.

"If a client is continuously training at the same level, your brain already prepares the body for that load," says Mujahid. Therefore, your muscles won't be as stressed, and you'll hit a veritable pleateau when it comes to improvement. By changing things up (grabbing heavier weights, playing with tempo, doing a more challenging variation of a move), you'll keep that stress load constant and will continue to see changes.

2. You're still running three miles in 30 minutes (or whatever your pace may be).

Are you generally running at a consistent intensity, distance or frequency without increasing or changing one of those variables? It's time to kick things into high gear, says Mujahid. That could mean it's time to start adding in speed drills or just ramping up your mileage a few days a week.

3. Your legs feel strong--but your arms feel weak.

That 7 A.M. Spin class is doing wonders for your butt and legs, but you're still struggling to do a regular push-up. If that sounds like you, you need to add more variety and cross-training sessions to your workout regime. Look at a week's worth of your workouts and ask yourself: are you hitting every muscle group and are you logging cardiovascular, strength, agility and flexibility sessions? If you are that Spin junkie, think about trying a yoga or CrossFit class once a week to target your arms, chest and shoulders, too.

4. You no longer feel breathless during your usual HIIT workout.

Once your body is used to the same routine, "it doesn't need to expend as much energy anymore, so it conserves energy," making you less tired, says Mujahid. You'll notice less post-workout fatigue or soreness, too, which means you're not gonna see change. And you won't burn as many cals--part of why you're doing a high-intensity workout in the first place, right?

5. You can sing along to all the words of your favorite song while working out.

No, we're not talking about belting out some Taylor Swift in your head. "If you can sing out loud while exercising, you're only working out at a moderate-intensity level, max," explains Mujahid. So push yourself and pick up the pace or cut the length of your recovery intervals during your next sweat session.

Guarantee you'll be feeling the burn again really soon.

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