When starting a workout program, the best thing to do is to start! Get going on a plan that you will stick to and enjoy. But after a few weeks, if you aren’t changing your routine up and following the right steps for your own success, you will plateau and probably have no idea why, or be unsure what to do in order to keep seeing progress. We call it the Progressive Overload Principle, which basically shows how we need to change at least one of any FITT principle every so often to keep seeing progress and break through plateaus. A good program goes through well developed Macrocycles, Mesocycles, and Microcycles. Progress may slow down at times, but imagine how much more progress you will be making when you can catch it right away, and understand how to change your program to accommodate upcoming progression, and target more direct results, while wasting no days or weeks in the gym! Each workout should be done with a purpose, so doing what’s going to work best for your progress every time should be your number one goal!
The macrocycle consists of your entire workout program. It covers everything to the end goal, which can be achieving a specific weight, physique, consistent energy level, athletic performance level, etc. They usually last for months or even years. It’s not unusual for Olympic athletes to have a well-set macrocycle for a course of many years. But how do we set up these macrocycles to actually work and reach our goal in mind. Work your way back words, and set shorter-term goals, leading to reach the end goal. Think of your end goal, and work your way back to the point you’re at now. Set up smaller “Meso and Microcycles” to meet your goal on time!
It’s difficult to simply work for the same single goal for a long period of time. We need some sort of feeling of achievement to stay excited about our progress and keep going. This is where the mesocycles come in. A macrocycle consists of many mesocycles. They are shorter term goals, and ways of changing your workouts in a timely manner so you avoid plateaus as much as possible. They should last 4 – 6 weeks at a time before making adjustments to your plan. Keep in mind, these adjustments should be working towards your end goal, and always increasing the overall intensity or volume of your workout plan, in order to boost progress!
Lastly, we have microcycles, and as you guessed, these are the smallest portions of your program, but possible most important. The microcycles should last days, or just a few weeks, and should be programmed for small achievable goals such as losing 3 pounds of fat in a specific week, gaining a pound of muscle in 1 week, or increasing your bench press by 10 pounds in 2 weeks. These help you realize all the progress you are really making, which in turn, can be the biggest motivator to keep you excited and on track! So small adjustments to your microcycles can help keep you on track with daily progression, and more importantly, launch you to your full macrocycle goal!
Why We Do All This
We do all this for obviously many reasons, but the biggest one for me is breaking down your goals into smaller shorter term ones, so you are more likely to keep yourself accountable and stay on the right track to reach your biggest goal within the time you set out to! So by programming your workout plan with the right macro, meso, and microcycle, you can stay on a much more direct track, which you see working for yourself first hand every week, and finally reaching your end goal. After all, you spend a lot of time and work hard in the gym. Doesn’t it make sense to do just a little more in order to make all that time spend that much more worth it!
We Can Help
Now with all that said, I know for many people that one of the hardest parts can be setting up what is actually the best cycles for you to reach your goals in mind! You can try workout routines for years and feel like you’re taking forever to actually be honest with yourself, and get where you want! Or, simply send me an email at Train@dakotalifefitness.com, and I will be happy to help you out! Getting yourself on the right track can be the best step you’ve ever taken when it comes to your health and fitness goals! So don’t waist anymore time in the gym with the wrong routines! Take the right steps now, and you’ll be amazed how fast you can truly progress!